Watford v Brighton – Premier League Betting Preview and Prediction
Watford and Brighton will go head to head this weekend at Vicarage Road in the opening match of the Premier League. Interestingly enough the Saturday’s match will mark the second season in a row that these two sides met in an opening day of the season. Last year, it was Watford who convincingly won 2:0 and will look to repeat that success this time out as well.
Watford looking to build upon the last season
The Hornets will hope they can improve upon their 11th place finish last season, which does not seem so far fetched considering the team’s improvement and all the new arrivals to the team during the summer. Looking back, one of their biggest problems Hornets had in 2018/19 season was their defense, which conceded 59 goals. While not as high as some teams who finished at the bottom of the league, Watford’s ambitions are set higher, as they look to finish in the top seven, something they missed by only seven points last season.
Hoping to fix the defensive issue, Watford signed Craig Davidson from West Brom as their new defender in whom they put a lot of hope. In addition to Davidson, Watford also signed Sarr from Rennais and Pedro from Fluminese to improve their attack as they look to aim for a higher finish in 2019/20 season. Other than those three signings, Watford remained mostly silent throughout the transfer window, which is not all that bad, considering they have a solid team, to begin with.
Brighton struggles with departures
The Seagulls finished last season barely above the relegation zone with a 9-9-20 record and 36 points to their name. It’s hard to pinpoint where exactly the team underperformed, however, it’s still clear that they had a lot of issues in both attack as well as in defense. Throughout 38 games, they scored only 35 goals and conceded 60, which is by no means good or even decent.
Looking at their transfer window campaign, Brighton failed to make any notable moves which would make us believe they will fare any better this season. Furthermore, a lot of their key players have been linked with transfers and loans to other clubs, some of which already left, other (Lewis Dunk) are expected to leave in the upcoming days.
On the other side, Brighton spent a fair sum of money so sign Webster, Trossard and Maupay, who should prove to be a solid addition to the team, will they be able to fill the void left by the departures, however, is yet to be seen. In addition to a handful of new players, Seagulls also brought in Graham Potter to the team who will take over for Chris Hughton, who left the club in mid-May.
Verdict & Prediction
Looking at the preseason, Watford produced an impressive result with three wins and only one defeat. Brighton meanwhile can boast with a 4-0-1 record, with their only defeat coming at the hands of Fulham (2:1). It’s safe to say both Watford and Brighton enjoyed a solid preseason, which could spell out a close match on the weekend.
Having said that, we have to consider Watford’s impressive home record against bottom-six for the past four seasons. Out of 25 games played at Vicarage Road, Hornets lost only twice. If we pair that with Brighton terrible away record in last two seasons ( won five out of 38), it becomes rather clear Hornets have a solid advantage here, which makes us believe they can take down Brighton and secure the first W of the season.
Prediction: Watford to win
Odds: 2.04 Pinnacle