Watford manager Javi Gracia rules out signings in January transfer window, unless ‘something changes’

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The Hornets will have to make do with the players they’ve got

Watford manager Javi Gracia has ruled out a move into the transfer market this month.

Fringe striker Stefano Okaka completed his temporary switch to Udinese earlier this week, with defender Marvin Zeegelaar following suit.

Hornets supporters should not be expected any new arrivals this month

There is also speculation surrounding the future of the in-form Abdoulaye Doucoure, but Gracia does not envisage any players arriving at Vicarage Road this month.

“In this moment, maybe different things happen, but I am happy with the squad I have,” said Gracia.

“With the players we have we can complete a very good season and if in one week something changes, we will see.

“But at the moment I prefer to value the players I have because they deserve that. We have to be demanding with the players and we have to be ambitious with them, too.”

Stefano Okaka has been loaned to Udinese

Stefano Okaka has been loaned to Udinese

Okaka joined Watford from Anderlecht in the summer of 2016, but has fallen out of favour under Gracia, featuring in just three matches this season, all of them as substitutes, prior to his loan switch.

“In my opinion, Stefano is a great player and a great person,” Gracia added.

“He was very important for the squad, not just for the minutes he played, but other things.

“However, the club, the player, and me, thought it was better to take this step and go on loan for the rest of the season.

“In his position there are many strikers and many options, so it was better for all of us to take this decision.”


Watford head to Selhurst Park to face Crystal Palace on Saturday, eighth in the Premier League table after losing just once during the festive period.

Christian Kabasele and Andre Gray returned to training from their respective injury lay-offs on Thursday, but the game against Palace may have arrived too soon for the duo to feature.

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