With Watford FC looking to revamp their squad after their return to the Premier League, WatfordNews has compiled a list of some of the key players that have gained interest from the club.
- Ainsley Maitland-Niles (Arsenal)
According to the Mirror, Watford are reportedly planning a move for Arsenal Midfielder Ainsley Maitland-Niles (pictured).
The 23-year-old is estimated to cost £15 million this summer with Arsenal looking to offload some of their talent in order to raise funds.
However, the Hornets are likely to face competition from Southampton, who were keen on signing Maitland-Niles on loan last January, but the England international opted to sign for West Brom instead in the hope of more regular game time.
The Arsenal academy graduate has earned five caps for his country and was part of the England U-20 World Cup winning side. Maitland-Niles started 19 games in the 2020/2021 Premier League season- both for Arsenal and the now Championship side West Brom.
He is an energetic, quick and versatile player who will work hard on and off the ball for his team. Additionally, the FA cup winner also has the ability to carry the ball forwards and take on his man.
Although predominantly a midfielder, Maitland-Niles has also featured several times as a right-back for his boyhood club Arsenal.
- Jens Stryger Larsen (Udinese)
After some impressive displays to help Denmark reach the semi-finals of Euro 2020 this summer, Jens Stryger Larsen has been touted with a move away from Udinese in the summer transfer window, with Watford reportedly interested in the 30-year-old.
The Danish international is extremely versatile and two-footed, being able to play on either side of a midfield three or most notably as a right or left wingback in a five at the back system.
During the Euros, the Udinese player showed his ability to play as a right wing-back in Denmark’s five at the back, often hanging around just in front of the halfway line on the right-hand side and occasionally getting forwards to link play and get a cross in.
Larsen also highlighted his skill from set pieces during Denmark’s 2-1 win over the Czech Republic, as he picked up a wonderful assist from a corner kick.
However, sources close to the player have suggested that he is unlikely to move to the newly promoted side, as he has other options from “top teams” in Europe, but the move should not be completely ruled out, especially due to the strong and reliable relationship Watford and Udinese have with each other.
- Glen Kamara (Rangers)
After just two years at the club, Glen Kamara has become a key part of Steven Gerrard’s side, featuring in all 33 games of Rangers’ title winning season, and starting all 10 of the side’s Europa League campaigns.
The ex-arsenal academy player is an extremely well-rounded central midfielder, exclusively operating and effecting play on the left-hand side of the midfield in a 4-3-3 system for Rangers, despite being right footed.
Although not having an outstanding impact for his side defensively or offensively, the Finland international is very well balanced and calm on the ball.
Kamara averages a pass completion rate of 91 per cent, demonstrating that he can be trusted to retain possession progress his side forward when on the ball.
According to the Daily Mail, a move for Glen Kamara has been “discussed extensively” by Watford, however, it is unlikely that Rangers will be willing to sell one of their key players for a low price.
- Amadou Onana (Hamburg SV)
According to BILD, Watford are “looking specifically” at 19-year-old central midfielder, Amadou Onana, who plays for 2.Bundesliga side Hamburg SV.
The Senegalese born yet Belgium U21 international stands at 6 feet 5 inches and has made a total of 25 appearances and 14 starts for Hamburg this season, racking up two goals and averaging 2.5 tackles per game.
Onana is an extremely physical presence in the centre of the pitch, however does have some disciplinary issues, as he has accumulated six yellow cards and one red card this season.
The midfielder is estimated to cost at least £7-9million, however Watford are set to face heavy competition for Onana, with big European clubs Lille and Borussia Dortmund set to be interested in the youngster.
- Eddie Nketiah (Arsenal)
Sky Sports claim Watford are eyeing up a move for Arsenal striker, Eddie Nketiah.
Nketiah is a young, exciting, and quick striker, capable of playing off the defender’s shoulder and running in behind, or displaying his excellent movement in and around the box.
The 22-year-old has not quite lived up to his potential as of yet for Arsenal, having only started four games and coming off the bench 13 times in the 2020-21 Premier league season, getting just two goals and one assist.
However, Nketiah has shown his attacking prowess for the England U-21 side, scoring 16 goals in just 17 games, becoming their all-time top scorer. Watford would need to cough up at least £15million if they want to buy the young striker, though are set to face competition from several other sides, with West Ham, Crystal Palace and Bayer Leverkusen all allegedly interested in Nketiah.
Picture credit Christian Bertrand & Shutterstock