Cape Town - Manager Javi Gracia has refused to criticise Watford after the "unexpected announcement" of his sacking on Saturday.
The Hornets decided to ditch Gracia on Saturday and opted to
re-appoint former boss Quique Sanchez Flores as their new head coach.
Flores returns to the club just over three years after he departed
following a sole season in charge but Gracia is unhappy with the manner
of his exit, even though his side's form so far this season has not been
Watford lost their first three games and then managed a draw last
time out at Newcastle but they are bottom of the table and, heading into
the international break, the pressure was building on Gracia.
He left Vicarage Road after Watford managed just one win in their
last 10 matches, stretching over last season in a run that goes back to
April, while they got to the FA Cup final but were hammered 6-0 by
Manchester City at Wembley.
Gracia says he "respects the decision" and says he is "grateful" for
the experience of managing in the Premier League but admitted he was
surprised to learn he had been fired.
He said in a statement: "After the unexpected announcement about the
termination of my contract after only four matches, I want to express my
surprise after competing the best season in Watford's history.
"I respect this decision and I'd like to reassure the excellent
relationship I have with Gino Pozzo and Filippo Giradi, and it is not
going to change despite my abrupt exit of the club.
"I am grateful to this club for allowing me to manage this great club
in the Premier League, it has been an incredible experience, with very
special moments like the FA Cup final I had the privilege to enjoy."
Flores now becomes Watford's fourth different manager in four years
and his first game back in charge is at home to Arsenal next Sunday.
- TeamTalk Media