Football | Ruthless Watford replace Gracia with Sanchez Flores

Watford have replaced manager Javi Gracia with Quique Sanchez Flores.

Gracia has been sacked after just four games of the 2019/20 Premier League season, with the Hornets languishing at the bottom of the table.

Sanchez Flores – who managed Watford for the 2015/16 campaign – was announced as Gracia’s successor just half an hour after the his fellow Spaniard’s dismissal.

His appointment sees him become the ninth managerial change in the last six years since, with Watford developing a reputation for their ruthless managerial decisions.

Gracia’s tenure lasted 20 months, making him the only Watford manager to last more than one season since 2013.

Watford have successfully become an established top tier side in recent seasons, but have been criticized for their revolving door of managers.

The Hornets finished 11th in the Premier League last season, and also made it to the FA Cup final, where they were hammered 6-0 by Manchester City.

Gracia made an immediate impact after replacing Marco Silva at the club, earning praise from pundits and fans alike, but the Spanish manager has now paid the price for Watford’s poor start to his second full season at the helm.

The club have lost three of their four opening league games, scoring just two goals and picking up a solitary point thus far. Brighton, Everton and West Ham all registered wins against Gracia’s side, with Watford’s fourth match ending in a draw against Newcastle.

Sanchez Flores, 54, has managed Espanyol and Shanghai Shenhua since being controversially dismissed by Watford in 2016.

The Spaniard had guided the English club to a 13th-place finish in the top tier, and ha also reached an FA Cup semi-final in his debut season in the dugout.

Sanchez Flores will bring in his own background team, with Gracia’s assistants also departing Vicarage Road.

The former Atletico Madrid manager faces a tough run of fixtures, with the Hornets set to face Arsenal, Man City, Wolves, Spurs and Chelsea in five of their next seven league matches.