October 23, 2021

Troost-Ekong hails Watford’s ‘massive’ victory over Sheffield Wednesday

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The 27-year-old has lauded the impressive showings from his side against Darren Moore’s men at Vicarage Road

William Troost-Ekong has expressed his delight after Watford secured a 1-0 ‘massive’ victory over Sheffield Wednesday in Friday’s Championship game.

The centre-back rushed back from international duty with the Nigeria national team, where he had played a key role in ensuring the Super Eagles qualify for the 2022 Africa Cup of Nations to feature for the Hornets.

Troost-Ekong featured for 90 minutes in the encounter, helping the Vicarage Road outfit to keep a clean sheet and securing their sixth consecutive victory which boosted their chances of clinching automatic promotion to the Premier League.

The defender is pleased with the outcome of the game and praised the hard work put in by his teammates.

“It was a lot to travel and then play again so it’s a massive result for us,” Troost-Ekong told the club website.

“These kind of games are the ones that hopefully get you promoted. They are not as beautiful as a 6-0 at home and we had our luck with the goal, but you earn your luck and we worked hard for that.

“We did well to control the game. Sheffield Wednesday had the ball a lot and played good football, but they weren’t that dangerous apart from one big chance.”

Since Watford’s defeat to Queens Park Rangers in February, the Hornets have won 10 games, losing only to Bournemouth and Troost-Ekong has revealed the discussion that turned around their fortunes.

“That was the key week for our season. I felt that it wasn’t good enough, from how we played to the general feeling and the attitude of the team,” he continued.

“We were negative and everyone was complaining. We looked like 11 islands instead of a team. We have the quality, but we were not pulling in the same direction. I was driving home from the stadium and I called some of the boys and asked them what they thought.

“Everyone had the same idea and we got in a room and had it out. Everyone was honest and said what they thought. If you can’t be honest with each other and not sugar coat stuff, then you aren’t going to make changes.

“After that, the attitude changed in the team. The senior boys agreed with what I said and we changed, to play as a team and to leave it all out there. I was happy everyone agreed and we got it moving from there.”

Troost-Ekong teamed up with the Hornets last summer from Italian side Udinese and has been delivering consistent performances for the side, having featured in 28 games across all competitions.

His solid defensive displays have helped the Hornets to their current second spot on the Championship table and hopes they can continue their impressive form.

“I’ve worked so hard to get back here and the team has worked so hard to get into this position. You have to enjoy it. That’s what ticks us over,” he added.

“When we are out there, we don’t look under pressure and the more you play like that, the more confidence you build up. We are on an upward spiral, which is massive at this stage of the season.

“It’s good to play in a team like this. Everyone feels confident and we know if we do our jobs, we probably win the game.”

Watford will take on Middlesbrough in their next Championship game on Monday.