Over the past few weeks, Troy Deeney has been constantly linked with a £25m move to Leicester City. Many fans held the assumption that Watford would be willing to sell at a price that is more than most think he’s worth. However, Troy Deeney has become an essential component of Watford and the Pozzo family’s structure; in fact, he is a fundamental reason why Watford have been seemingly able to manage in the face of adversity with the constant changing of managers.
From Gianfranco Zola to Billy McKinlay, Slavisa Jokanovic and Quique Sanchez Flores, the club have managed to maintain an ultimately successful model, one which has meant that Watford are approaching a second successive season in the Premier League for the very first time.
One of the first tasks for new coach Walter Mazzarri is to establish a positive relationship with his captain as well as a trust in his ability to serve as a mediator between players and manager. It’s one of the things Deeney has excelled in since being made captain at the start of the 2014-2015 season. Many a player who was charged with a brawl in a nightclub would be disgraced and downgraded in terms of status within a football club.
Despite that, Deeney is adored by Watford supporters and is well-liked by his fellow teammates. His honesty in interviews has been refreshing, including calling his teammate Juan Carlos Paredes ‘pathetic’ over an incident involving Diego Costa. An appearance on Match of the Day 2 impressed many watching and only added to his growing reputation.
Deeney had an impressive first season at the club with 13 goals and seven assists, and his relationship with fellow striker Odion Ighalo helped Watford maintain their place amongst the elite of English football. He held more of a supporting role, often playing in behind Ighalo in a 4-2-3-1 formation. The defensive tactics implemented by Quique Flores meant that Deeney would often play a deeper role, forming a five-man midfield when out of possession.
His hard-working attitude and work ethic prompted Leicester City to offer a staggering amount of money to secure his services. However, Watford were adamant in that he was not for sale under any circumstances.
Many feel that Deeney is not worth that price tag, but his influence extends beyond the football pitch. He is more likely to have been sold if he was not central to how Watford move forward. In signing a new five-year contract, Deeney has been rewarded with a bumper new package, and his job will be to help build on last season and ensure that Watford are an established team in the Premier League.