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Aidy: I'm at my best right now
Aidy Boothroyd.   Picture: Holly Cant.
Aidy Boothroyd. Picture: Holly Cant.

Under fire Aidy Boothroyd says he is thriving amid the mounting pressure and criticism that has flowed from the terraces following Wednesday night's horror show at home to Barnsley.

A number of fans called for the Hornets boss to be sacked in the immediate aftermath of the crushing defeat at home to the relegation-haunted Tykes, fearing Watford's hopes of promotion are fading fast amid a series of sub-standard performances that have yielded just one win in ten matches.

While a change at the helm at this stage of the season would be senseless, there are grave mis-givings about Boothroyd's team selection, much-maligned style of play and transfer dealings. Some supporters have questioned whether he has taken the team as far as he can.

A weary-looking Boothroyd was unusually downbeat at his weekly press conference yesterday (Thursday), lacking his normal spark and ebullience, but he remains confident Watford will finish in the top two and that he is the right man to take the team forward.

"I'm at my best right now," he declared. "I just take the criticism on the chin, move on and bounce back. I accept anything that comes my way. I do that because I haven't got any choice.

"It would be easy for me to criticise fans. Evidently, we are not going to give our fans anything to cheer about unless we win.

"I could say, Where was the club two-and-a-half years ago?' But that's not right. If you set your expectations high and then don't deliver then you come in for criticism. I will always be judged on what I say. Some of the personal stuff is par for the course from people who don't know you any better."

For the full story, see this week's Watford Observer.

1:00pm Friday 11th April 2008

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Posted by: Tony Coton, Brighton on 1:17pm Fri 11 Apr 08
"I could say, Where was the club two-and-a-half years ago?' But that's not right.

No its not right but you still got it in didnt you?

I think he has lost it....
Posted by: Vicar Rage on 1:27pm Fri 11 Apr 08
There's nothing like living on past glories, is there?

I have this vision of Boothroyd being carted off on the lasy day of the season as we finish seventh, shouting to anyone who will listen 'But I won the Play-Off Final, and I brought in money, and we were top of the league for weeks etc etc etc

If you want praise for those successes, expect an equal portion of flack when you fail.

And in my book, steering a team from nine points clear to a position where you're having to sweat on finishing in the top six is failure.
Posted by: WD18Firm, Watford on 1:44pm Fri 11 Apr 08
"I could say, Where was the club two-and-a-half years ago?' But that's not right.

But you just said it Aidy. Sigh!

Four games to save your job mate.
Posted by: chris, the vic on 1:50pm Fri 11 Apr 08
If I was thriving in a situation I would not slink down the tunnel rapidly. I would than the officials (As Aidy didn't), congratulate the other team management (as Aidy did)and greet my players as they came off after a torrid game (which Aidy didn't)..but then neither would i worry about which 3.0 defeat was worst and give radio interviews about the positives etc of a 3.0 defeat.

And didnt Aidy say he and the team were in it together in both the good times and the bad times. When we win Aidy last to leave the pitch, after Barnsley Aidy was first to leave the public area by some seconds before the team were regailed by the rookery.

General Boothroyd leads from the back but luckily for WFC thrives on it.

Aidy who are you kidding other than yourself?
Posted by: chris, the vic on 1:59pm Fri 11 Apr 08
EEvidently, we are not going to give our fans anything to cheer about unless we win.

Last year the team went off to enormous cheering after losing many times home and away, because they gave 100% of their ability and effort.

So not true Aidy...what we dont like is this years desperate football and in several cases a lack of effort...inept buying ..inept substitutions and your inept little digs. You should be ashamed of WEDNESDAY and ashamed of the fact that you have lost the tremendous support you had even when we finished bottom last year.

So put your brain in gear and ask yourself why.

I hope you succeed at our club for the sake of the club and thrive for many years...but you maybe feeling like a victim as you read these threads ...but look at your paypacket, think of what we pay and then compare the championship team you had three years ago and the cost of it with what you have developed now.

And you are at your best right now?? intersting
Posted by: Bigbanker13, London on 2:10pm Fri 11 Apr 08
Not everything is AB's fault, a major problem the lack of money for players; this was the reason for no loan signings, not the fact that AB was satisfied with the squad. It is the same lack of money that has driven AB to try and find another "King"; we can't compete for the better players. This philosophy sometimes it work like with Bromby and JE and sometimes it doesn't �. Collins John� Ironically AB is top of Sheffield United list as their new manager. Why would he go? They are bigger club with money. Kevin McCabe has the wealth to back his ambitions.
I do take issue with AB on tactics and selection. The basic fact is we are not scoring enough goals. You have a choice, you either buy players who can fit in with your tactics, or adapt the tactics to suit the players. AB persists in the long ball hoof to one of the smallest forwards in the Championship. Ellington made his reputation playing off Jason Roberts. He needs the ball put through, or to his feet. The same can be said about Priskin, a clever player, (except in his understanding of the offside rule.) but no long ball merchant. Doris is okay, but a battering ram who is never going to be a prolific goal scorer. If we had brought James Bettie instead of Ellington, then none of us would be in the depths of depression.
Team selection, surely no-one believes that Lloyd is a better right back than AM or Jay? He has no ball control, positional sense, or passing ability whatsoever. If his brain was fitted inside a walnut it would still rattle. JJ is willing, but still has much to learn, chasing around like a schoolboy and just lunging in. The choice in midfield, JE excluded, seems to be from one dimensional players, if they have a physical presence they lack vision or passing ability, or visa versa. I know we have been unlucky with injuries but I don't understand why neither Ainsworth or Rinaldi haven't had a chance, they at least, look to some basic skills. Surely both Ellington and Priskin would value some intelligent passing?
There seems to be a real lack of leadership on the pitch, we get to1 nil up, or things go wrong and the whole team runs round like headless chickens with the inability to string 2 passes together.
There seems to be a common consensus here on the issues, some things can't be changed, but others, which can, are blindingly obvious. I don't think it is a knee jerk reaction to call for a change, let's hope the Blades make Aidy an offer for next season.
Posted by: watfordkev, Watford on 2:12pm Fri 11 Apr 08
While I'm (genuinely) glad to read he's at his best, it's the state of our performances and our results that worry me.

After the Barnsley result we should get an absolute gubbing tomorrow. However, the way this League is going we could go and win (yes I was at Wednesday's game!), and of course as it says above to change now is sheer madness anyhow.

So, let's hope for a result tomorrow and a continuation of a really weird promotion tilt...!
Posted by: watfordkev, Watford on 2:12pm Fri 11 Apr 08
While I'm (genuinely) glad to read he's at his best, it's the state of our performances and our results that worry me.

After the Barnsley result we should get an absolute gubbing tomorrow. However, the way this League is going we could go and win (yes I was at Wednesday's game!), and of course as it says above to change now is sheer madness anyhow.

So, let's hope for a result tomorrow and a continuation of a really weird promotion tilt...!
Posted by: SIMMO, BUCKS on 2:19pm Fri 11 Apr 08
"I could say, Where was the club two-and-a-half years ago?' But that's not right.

well Aidy i delivered a terrific set of numbers for my boss 2.5 years ago and was rewarded for my efforts ,however rest assured if i was not doing that now i would be out of a job the past is the past i cannot go into my boss and say "boss i was brilliant two years ago " he would say yes you were THEN !

AIDY YOU WERE HANDSOMLEY REWARDED FOR FAILURE last summer but we quietley accepted it as fans and backed you ,the watford fans are EXTREMELY patient by other standards so your little "dig" is childish TIME to keep your mouth closed get your tracksuit on AND EARN that massive salary your are on and deliver on YOUR promises ,you set the expectations we did not !
I hope you suceed for all our sakes COME ON !
Posted by: Winston, watford on 2:36pm Fri 11 Apr 08
Aidy: I'm at my best right now

With a statement like that its time AB was committed.

Posted by: Sully, Watford on 2:41pm Fri 11 Apr 08
Let's see what the performance is like tomorrow at The Hawthorns.
If it's anything like we've witnessed recently then its goodnight, godbless & have a safe journey home!

Personally I think we will be out of our league but then again stranger things have happened.
Posted by: JohnBoy, Watford on 2:44pm Fri 11 Apr 08
Sounds like fighting talk from AB. Shame he can't instill some fire into the bellies of our players.
Posted by: Tring Hornet, Tring on 3:17pm Fri 11 Apr 08
Although I am bound to be shouted down AB still has us in a position where we can still gain automatic promotion and worse comes to the worst we will be in the ply offs.

I don't believe he is living on past glories, we just have developed unrealistic ambitions caused by a lucky start to the season.

This division has to have been the strangest one in many a year and as for tomorrows result who would bet either way?
Posted by: Paul, Welwyn Garden city on 3:24pm Fri 11 Apr 08
I hate you lot, if he gets sacked i'm guna go mad you heartless p*icks and i hope that watford get a manager who doesn't do well watford do sh*t next season and i'm going to be saying to you lot we could of been in top two this season but becasue of some of those brainless people who think they know it all are just t*ats and if it wasn't for him we could of been playing in league one two years ago so people stop talking out you arses and think football not what you want becasue it's about the club Not you
Posted by: Watford Boy, Kings Cross on 3:37pm Fri 11 Apr 08
Guys, my slightly arrogant thoughts on many Watford fans:

http://www.sportingo
.com/football/a8082_
boo-not-boo-fickle-f
ace-watford-fan

agree or disagree, i'd really appreciate a comment at the end of the article.
cheers
Posted by: Professor Plum, The Billiard Room on 3:40pm Fri 11 Apr 08
I am beginning to think that Aidy has the same intangible ability to irritate as Hilary Clinton. That said, considering it was a toss up between him and Colin Calderwood to replace Lewington, the thought of who might make the short list to take over from Aidy when he gets the bullet is chilling�.
Posted by: Loidis, Norway on 3:59pm Fri 11 Apr 08
Aidy is the victum of two self inficted things:

1. The success he has had at the club.

2. The high expectations he has build by his overoptimistic statesments in the media.

I do belivie Aidy has learnt lot during the last couple of months, and that he will be more carefull with his external statesments in the future.

But all Watford-fans should get behind Aidy and give him the support he deserves, because he has - overall - done a superb jobb at Watford, and he is a very talented manager.
Posted by: luther67, watford on 4:26pm Fri 11 Apr 08
Two thoughts.

1. I wonder if all this Boothroyd out stuff is the view of Watford fans in general or
just those who post on here.
2. If we do boot him out - as many posters here would wish - who do you suggest we'll get in that will want to come and will do a better job?
Posted by: Stewart, LB on 4:31pm Fri 11 Apr 08
Agree Luther67. Considering we've been top 5 all season it is a bit worrying. It's the style of football that's sending everyone over the edge. It's been a very long time since we've had such a dire home record. That siad i've been watching watford for 24 years and can't remember a more negative or patronising crowd. Some don't deserve a successful team, others do. Notice how many arguements there are in the Rookery these days amongst fans. Not any would have done what Aidy's done in 3 seasons. However, the style of play should change as of four games time.
Posted by: Tony Coton, Brighton on 4:36pm Fri 11 Apr 08
Paul wrote:
I hate you lot, if he gets sacked i'm guna go mad you heartless p*icks and i hope that watford get a manager who doesn't do well watford do sh*t next season and i'm going to be saying to you lot we could of been in top two this season but becasue of some of those brainless people who think they know it all are just t*ats and if it wasn't for him we could of been playing in league one two years ago so people stop talking out you arses and think football not what you want becasue it's about the club Not you
boo hoo paul. We are so mean for picking on poor Aidy.

Grow up you idiot. People have every right to think for themselves and not keep swallowing the spin kings bull.

He has spent a fortune, this is his team and they are poor. I think he got lucky two years ago.
Posted by: Metal Mickey, Iver Bucks on 4:37pm Fri 11 Apr 08
Luther67, its is not just about the results mate, it is about the style of football, what we are watching will never take the club forward. Personally I think AB is a fantastic motivator, man manager and organiser...but he is consistently having to build the team up again because it is his tactics in the first place that are demoralising both the players and the fans..do you really think decent footballers want to get up in the morning and lump a bit of leather 40 yards and run after it?? Cos they dont they want to play footbal the right way. Ideal scenario is I would like AB to stay, but have somebody experienced to work alongside hime to help with introducing a style of football that will win this league next year and keeps us in the premiership the year after, and somebody to provide some guidance in the transfer market. But we all know he is a control freak and a stubborn git, so he wont allow GS to appoint somebody to help..so what do we do??
Posted by: Stewart, LB on 4:41pm Fri 11 Apr 08
Nodding in agreement at the word 'stubborn' mickey. Malky is a yes man and anyone of a different opinion has gone. I am in the 'want him to stay' camp though with the tactics being tweaked in the summer.
Posted by: nvb2, Upper Rous on 5:00pm Fri 11 Apr 08
Aidy should just keep quiet and let his team's performances speak for themselves. There are 4 games left and these 4 games (or maybe 6 or 7) will decide his future and not what sense or nonsense he chooses to speak.

Whether he really is 'at his best' under the pressure will be apparent in the next couple of weeks and no cheap shots at the fans will change that.

I just hope that he is the miracle worker that his ego tells him that he is.

Posted by: nvb2, Upper Rous on 5:01pm Fri 11 Apr 08
Aidy should just keep quiet and let his team's performances speak for themselves. There are 4 games left and these 4 games (or maybe 6 or 7) will decide his future and not what sense or nonsense he chooses to speak.

Whether he really is 'at his best' under the pressure will be apparent in the next couple of weeks and no cheap shots at the fans will change that.

I just hope that he is the miracle worker that his ego tells him that he is.

Posted by: Hexham Hornet, Hexham on 6:40pm Fri 11 Apr 08
Aidy is obviously having a hard time, but saying that he is at his best now does seem a bit stupid. If he is at his best God help us when he drops below that. What he needs to realise is the fans are not booing because we are losing, but because of the way in which we are losing. If we were playing good and exciting football and losing by the odd goal then that would be different, but we are playing like a team of large 7 year olds who are just learning the basics. The big difference is that 7 year olds are enthusiastic and try, even if they aren't very good. Aidy all we want is some commitment and decent football. Is that too much to ask?
Posted by: Metal Mickey, Iver Bucks on 6:49pm Fri 11 Apr 08
Listen to Hexhan Hornet, nothing else needs to be said. Hexham you have hit the nail on the head!! No we can all go to the pub have a beer and dream about winning tommorow...
Posted by: Loidis, Norway on 8:58pm Fri 11 Apr 08
I just can't understand the amount of critism Aidy Boothroyd gets from many Watford-supporters. Some of you seem to thing that he has been a three-years disaster!

I will not be suprised if this scenario happens:
Aidy takes the club up this season - and then leaves!

Aidy will not have any trouble getting a manager-job at a bigger club, but Watford will struggle to get a manager half as talented as him!
Posted by: HiHo SilverLining, Norfolk on 9:24pm Fri 11 Apr 08
Hexham Hornet wrote:
Aidy is obviously having a hard time, but saying that he is at his best now does seem a bit stupid. If he is at his best God help us when he drops below that. What he needs to realise is the fans are not booing because we are losing, but because of the way in which we are losing. If we were playing good and exciting football and losing by the odd goal then that would be different, but we are playing like a team of large 7 year olds who are just learning the basics. The big difference is that 7 year olds are enthusiastic and try, even if they aren't very good. Aidy all we want is some commitment and decent football. Is that too much to ask?
Yes....Well said "Hexham Hornet"
Posted by: Barney, Surrey on 9:39pm Fri 11 Apr 08
No one was more fed up than me about Wednesdays defeat, a truly disapointing performance, lots of effort but a terrible headless chicken like performance from the team. But just think about this people, we have a had only 2 truly excellent Managers in the clubs history, 2 managers who were capable of taking the club to the very highest division. By right for the size of club & town Watford would at most be expected to be a Division two club, remember we are a sleepy little town in Hertfordshire, not a huge city, get real all you whingers. To get this club into billionaires row in the Prem is a truly phenomenal achievement, an amazing feat. This season we still have the chance of not only promotion thru the playoffs, but still have the chance of automatic promotion! think about it, Watford in the Premier league, miraculous stuff! so any true Watford supporters, get totally behind your team & manager, rain or shine, we still have one of the two greatest managers in this clubs history here, now, still in charge, so stop all the personal crap, get off Aidys back stop all the abuse, forget any errors or transfer ****-ups & all that negative rubbish, think about the successe's, the good things, the fact is Watford could still be in the Prem next season! Any true long term fan who like me watched the dreadful teams served up in the eras of Roedar, Lee & Perrymans et all know that this a true golden age in the clubs history, the prem on the horizon yet again! amazing! 100 plus years in existence, the club has only been successful for 15 or so of those years, so we've had around 95 years of crap to endure, so think about it, this is a golden age, so stop bloody moaning & whinging & enjoy it, ENJOY THE SUCCESS!!!!! COME ON YOU HORNETS !!!!!!!!!!!!
Posted by: Paul, Welwyn Garden city on 9:48pm Fri 11 Apr 08
Tony Coton wrote:
Paul wrote: I hate you lot, if he gets sacked i'm guna go mad you heartless p*icks and i hope that watford get a manager who doesn't do well watford do sh*t next season and i'm going to be saying to you lot we could of been in top two this season but becasue of some of those brainless people who think they know it all are just t*ats and if it wasn't for him we could of been playing in league one two years ago so people stop talking out you arses and think football not what you want becasue it's about the club Not you
boo hoo paul. We are so mean for picking on poor Aidy. Grow up you idiot. People have every right to think for themselves and not keep swallowing the spin kings bull. He has spent a fortune, this is his team and they are poor. I think he got lucky two years ago.
Get your head out of your own arse mate and stop feeling sorry foryourself
Telling me to grow up
Another complete idiot talking out your arse.
Posted by: chris, the vic on 10:51pm Fri 11 Apr 08
Graham Taylor was a great club manager.

Ken Furphy was a great motivator on and off the pitch.

Aidy may get to their level...he is not there yet.

Equally the best striker and line leader i ever saw in a WFC shirt was Cliff Holton and marlon wasnt up with him.

Aidy may make it if he does great but he is harsh with others, says stupid things and cant always take it back
Posted by: 4boys, Hemel hempstead on 11:49pm Fri 11 Apr 08
Loidy and Barney obviously dont get to go to often, or only go to away games, cause this is one of the worst seasons at home in my 30+.
Golden age what a joke!
The football is mind numbing, even the poor seasons under Perryman and Roeder had more exciting Home games than this season.
Posted by: Karl Wiggins, Rickmansworth on 1:23am Sat 12 Apr 08
With two teams who had everything to play for, one an automatic promotion placing and one a jump out of the relegation zone, this promised to be exciting match.

I imagine that many Watford fans watched with interest the televised game between Stoke City and Crystal Palace on Tuesday night, hoping that the South London club could do us a favour and prevent Stoke from gaining any more points. With a 2-1 victory to Palace in a thrilling encounter we all breathed a sigh of relief, but it was quite sobering to watch the likes of 17-year-old midfielder Victor Moses, England U21 Tom Soares, on loan Chelsea striker Scott Sinclair and on loan Benfica defender Jose Miguel da Rocha Fonte. I have to admit that on Tuesday night I thought to myself that I don't fancy facing Palace in the play-offs. They've improved throughout the season

Wednesday promised to offer an even more exciting encounter, and I for one fully expected us to go top of the table. Barnsley had given their all in the FA Cup, would obviously be dispirited at their loss to Cardiff and should be there for the taking. However, the thrilling game that should have been never came to pass. I didn't make the long journey to Hull, so can't really comment, but I imagine comparisons were made.

However, contrary to what would appear to be the opinion of most of Wednesday's crowd, I felt there were a lot of positives to be taken from the game. I make mistakes in my job, we all do, but thankfully I'm not booed by approximately 16,000 people when I do so. And I don't think the team deserved that.

In the first half we lacked composure, there's no doubt. We constantly mis-timed our passes so that they inevitably ended up at a Barnsley player's feet. Richard Lee even took a free kick that landed neatly in the opposition goalie's hands.

While Barnsley were clearly up for it, Watford lacked passion! This is unusual because it's normally after the half-time break that Watford tend to take 10 minutes to get back into the game. To me, this is the most dangerous time for us, for I often think that they have a little nap in the changing room, as they appear to come out wiping the sleep from their eyes. The opposition, on the other hand, come out fired up after the break, and we're often lucky not to concede during this period.

But on Wednesday night we were caught off guard again and again. My wife was texting information as to what the commentators on Sky Sports were saying about us, and it wasn't complimentary.

I don't like to isolate any player, and I got extremely frustrated throughout the game listening to the comments around me from from people who are happy to see anyone lose, but Richard Lee appeared to be decidedly shaky. He only just managed to hold onto simple balls and his kicking at times could have had more accuracy.

I imagine, that some of the crowd's reaction stems from the fact that 11,000 of us have already paid for next year's season tickets in the hope of being right back in the Premier League, and that's understandable, but as I said earlier there were a lot of positives to be taken from the game. Jobi McAnuff played a superb second half, never giving up, always ready to fight for the ball, Danny Shittu was strong in defence, coming to our rescue on at least one occassion when Barnsley had got past everyone else, Lloyd Doyley was all action, although clearly missed Tommy Smith on the right wing. And what a spectacular run he put in when he just couldn't find anyone to pass to!

The team came out (uncharacteristally) fired up after break and showed a lot more fight. Time after time we attacked their goal, but just couldn't seem to convert, and of course in doing so we left ourselves open at the back, and Kayode Odejayi never missed an opportunity. Odejayi was clearly on form because he missed a sitter at the weekend against Cardiff and, after missing a string of chances, was recently booed off by his own fans against Southampton. But he didn't miss his chances tonight.

I truly feel we can draw comfort from tonight's game. It's not the end of the world. There's only two points between the top five teams, so anything can happen. Barnsley claimed only 51% of possession on Wednesday as opposed to our 49%. All that can be said now is that we've wasted our game in hand. We've now got to take that fight to West Brom at the weekend.

This may make me unpopular, but our team did not deserve to be booed off the pitch, although Kayode Odejayi certainly deserved the applause he received from the Watford fans.
Posted by: simpson2486, surrrey on 10:21am Sat 12 Apr 08
i did not ataend the hull away game, but did listen on three counties. sounded dreadfull. i saw the last 2 home games. dreadfull against coventry and got out of jail . just as bad agaist barnsley and got what we deserved. we have save our worst peformances for the end of the season.
i sit watching the championship goal highlights on tv and some of the quality of the play even in lower divisions makes watfords play look like what it is, truly bad.
lets get behind the team until the end of season and see what develops.
Posted by: jonty, Watford on 12:50pm Sat 12 Apr 08
Aidy: I'm at my best right now

You bloody need to be!!
Posted by: pete, Guildford on 1:19pm Sat 12 Apr 08
Whilst I don't disagree with all Karl's comments I have to say that defensively Danny was awful. When not behind his forward with the ball coming straight down the pitch he gets hopelessly out of position. His "great " clearance in the first half was because he completely lost his man and let him get away. The third goal was also down to his poor positioning. He works hard and is a reasonable defender but needs an influential centre half next to him to keep him up to his defensive duties.
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