Watford vs Birmingham City Match Analysis & Prediction
16/09/2023 5:00 pm
Championship football returns following the season’s first international break as Watford welcome high-flying Birmingham City to Vicarage Road on Saturday.
The Hornets have made a mixed start to the campaign under new management in Hertfordshire, while Birmingham feel like a different proposition to years gone by under due to exciting American ownership.
Watford’s winless run across all competitions extended to five matches on September 2, with the Hornets sharing the spoils with Coventry City in the East Midlands in a six-goal thriller.
Since a comfortable 4-0 victory over Gareth Ainsworth’s Queens Park Rangers on the opening day of the Championship season, Valerien Ismael is yet to pick up another victory, with a five-game winless run including a disappointing defeat at Stevenage in the first round of the EFL Cup.
With Watford currently sitting 18th after five matches, it is expected former West Bromwich Albion boss Ismael will need to turn his side’s fortunes around swiftly or face a potential sacking.
Following a 1-1 draw with Millwall at St Andrew’s prior to the international break, Birmingham join Preston North End as the only two sides who are unbeaten at the beginning of the Championship campaign.
Blues are currently fourth in the Championship standings, having collected 11 points from their opening five matches, conceding a division-low tally of three goals in the process.
John Eustace’s side have struggled very much at Vicarage Road over the past decade, with Birmingham losing their last five matches at Watford’s Hertfordshire home by a combined scoreline of 10-0.
Watford vs. Birmingham City Head to head
In the 32 previous meetings between these two teams, Watford have claimed 17 victories while Birmingham City have won nine, and they have drawn in six. Birmingham have scored 33 goals and conceded 48 in the process.
Watford Team News
Watford left-back Jamal Lewis remains a doubt after suffering a thigh injury in August, meaning Ken Sema could start in the hosts’ defence once again.
Mileta Rajovic is set to retain his place in the starting XI alongside Tom Ince and Matheus Martins after scoring a brace against Coventry last time out.
Watford's Last 5 Matches
Birmingham City Team News
Birmingham have confirmed that this game will come too soon for injured trio Ethan Laird (hamstring), Siriki Dembele (hamstring) and Tyler Roberts (calf).
Midfielder Juninho Bacuna has been busy on international duty for Curacao over the past fortnight, and Eustace may opt to bench the former Rangers man at Vicarage Road.
Birmingham City's Last 5 Matches
12/08/2023Birmingham City1Leeds United0Championship
19/08/2023Bristol City0Birmingham City2Championship
26/08/2023Birmingham City2Plymouth Argyle1Championship
29/08/2023Birmingham City1Cardiff City3League Cup
Watford vs. Birmingham City: Odds and Predictions
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