Watford have confirmed that striker Troy Deeney will miss Saturday’s clash against West Ham at Vicarage Road.
The Hornet announced via their official Twitter account on Thursday afternoon that Deeney, 31, is set to spend the next few weeks on the sidelines after undergoing surgery on his knee.
It means that Deeney will be unavailable for selection by Javi Gracia when West Ham make the journey to Watford this weekend and Danny Welbeck could earn his first start for the struggling Hertfordshire side.
This is like salt being rubbed in Watford’s wounds. Gracia’s side have endured a woeful start to the new Premier League season after suffering a heavy 3-0 defeat at home against Brighton on the opening day before a 1-0 loss at Everton last week. It is not like Deeney played well in those matches but Watford will now be without their starting centre-forward and, most importantly, their captain for several weeks. Bad news for Watford is potentially good news for West Ham, who have leaked six goals in their opening two matches. Deeney has scored three goals in his seven appearances against the Hammers so without having to deal with his physical presence should be a relief for Issa Diop and Angelo Ogbonna, who could start in the centre of the defence for the second match in a row. Fabian Balbeuna was dropped to the bench after the 5-0 loss to Manchester City so Manuel Pellegrini could opt for an unchanged backline ahead of the trip to Watford.