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Chris Wilder Claims First Watford Win
by Lesli Simon - Thursday, 23 March 2023, 04:01 AM

Chris Wilder has earned his first victory as Watford manager with a 3-0 home triumph against Birmingham. The former Sheffield United coach was appointed to replace Slaven Bilic after the club's poor form, which saw them win just three Championship games since Christmas Day.

Wilder's arrival has come at a pivotal time for the club, as they sit four points behind Norwich and still in contention for a top six position with nine games left in the campaign. Wilder needs to put together an impressive finish to his debut campaign at Vicarage Road.

The new Hornets boss has pledged to strengthen his players' "front foot" as they aim to close the gap on play-off places. And he believes his side can build on their 3-0 victory against Birmingham when they take on QPR at Loftus Road tomorrow night (Tuesday).

Wilder was quick to recognize Keinan Davis for his bravery in physical challenges, including winning headers and tackles. "Keidan has been much like many of our players here," Wilder praised.

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Imran Louza and Keinan Davis scored within the opening 16 minutes to put an end to Everton's chances of an unlikely comeback. Ken Sema set up Louza's six-minute opener before On loan Aston Villa striker Davis added a second after 16 minutes - his fifth goal of the season.

Watford's 3-0 victory against Chelsea was their greatest ever success and ensured they hadn't lost at Vicarage Road in 30 Championship matches.

At the weekend, Chelsea scored a solitary goal against the Blues to claim a 2-0 victory. Troy Deeney returned from an ankle injury but will not feature against his former team on Tuesday night.

No doubt, this is a monumental change for the Hornets and it will have an immediate effect on their performance. It is crucial that Wilder can secure his first win as Hornets manager against Chelsea to move them back into play-off contention ahead of Saturday's showdown with QPR at Vicarage Road.

He will draw on his own experience and knowledge of the Championship to guide them through this challenging period in the season. Prior to this role, he managed Sheffield United and led them to promotion from League One.

After his appointment, Wilder will aim to make an impact on his fans and start by taking a win at QPR on Saturday. He has made two changes from the team which drew 0-0 at Preston in Bilic's final match as manager: Mario Gaspar and Keinan Davis have come in for Troy Deeney and Isaac Success respectively.

Wilder was fired by Middlesbrough in October but previously managed Sheffield United, leading them to promotion from the Championship and eventually into Premier League status during his first season as manager. His experience using 3-5-2 formation in the Championship gave him insight as to whether this system should continue or not. With one win under his belt as Hornets boss, Wilder hopes this first win will give him a clear indication if this is something he wants to continue using going forward.

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