Former Liverpool defender Mark Lawrenson is still fretting over Everton’s form under Carlo Ancelotti, having collapsed late on at home to Newcastle United last time out.
Goals from Moise Kean and Dominic Calvert-Lewin appeared set to seal Ancelotti’s fourth win at the Goodison Park helm, but a stoppage-time double from substitute Florian Lejeune earned the Toon a shock point.
A tendency to concede late on is leaving Lawrenson suggesting the boss still has a lot of work on his hands to make his spell on Merseyside a success.
What may come to Ancelotti’s rescue this weekend, in the eyes of Lawrenson, is that Watford were arguably the ‘sloppiest’ they have been under Nigel Pearson since his appointment in December when they lost at Aston Villa last time out.
“Watford’s unbeaten run under Nigel Pearson was ended by Aston Villa in their last league game, and that was probably their sloppiest performance since he took charge in early December,” Lawrenson noted in his column for BBC Sport.
“They were not great in the FA Cup against Tranmere either, but that does not really matter because it was basically their reserve team that lost that tie.
What will the result be vs Watford?
“As for Everton, well you could sum them up at the moment by the way they failed to see out their game against Newcastle despite leading 2-0 at the end of the 90 minutes. They have improved a lot under Carlo Ancelotti, but there is still a lot of work to be done.”
Watford saw their season turn around with the appointment of Pearson, having won just one of their 15 Premier League fixtures prior to his arrival but have taken all three points in three of the nine since.
The Hornets’ haul of 15 points from a possible 27 is the fifth-most in the top-flight, though comes home one fewer than we and Southampton.
Putting a further three points between the Vicarage Round outfit and us this weekend could move us to within a point of fifth-placed Manchester United if they fail to take anything against Wolverhampton Wanderers.
In other Everton news, Ancelotti is to have three players on hand against Watford whom he missed in our last two games.