BARNSLEY boss Keith Hill has stressed his side won’t be taking “anything for granted” when Watford visit Oakwell tomorrow.
The Reds are unbeaten in their last three league matches, but the Hornets are on a good run themselves, unbeaten in their last four.
They sit just a place below Barnsley in the table so there’s plenty to play for as both sides look to give no quarter at this early stage in the season.
Hill said: “We don’t take any game lightly or any opposition for granted,
“They’re a good side and have recruited well in the summer. Sean Dyche has taken over [as manager] and they got a great result at Reading last weekend and then drew 2-2 against Birmingham having been 2-0 down, so they’ve got resilience.
“They’ve got good players and it’s going to be a stern test, but I would imagine there’ll be a little bit of pressure on us to perform and get a result. But I think Watford might come here, sit deep, deny us space and try and get the 12th man - the crowd - to try and support their strategy rather than our crowd being patient with our strategy.
“It’s not negative, but it’s about being compact and working on frustration tactics against us. The two recent results will mean confidence is building for them.”
Watford certainly have plenty of talent in their squad with midfielders John Eustace and Mark Yeates proven professionals at this level and defenders Adrian Mariappa and Martin Taylor offering experience in defence, while youngster Marvin Sordell is a player Hill identifies as someone his side need to watch for having seen him played for England Under-21s at Oakwell earlier this month.
But Hill is boosted by the return of Portuguese striker Ricardo Vaz Te and midfielder Nathan Doyle, both back having recovered from thigh and groin injuries respectively.
“It’s good to have them both back, but
we’re still missing a few players,” admitted Hill.
Skipper Rob Edwards and Matt Done are both rated “highly unlikely” by Hill to play, although he has given them a “slim” chance of making his final match day squad.
Striker Craig Davies remains sidelined with a groin injury, but Hill is hopeful the will start training again with the squad by the end of next week.
Grimsby are still mulling over a potential loan deal for Reds’ midfielder Alastair Taylor, while no enquiries have yet been made to take left-back Jay McEveley away on loan.