Gracia 'surprised' by sudden dismissal follow 'the best season in Watford's history'

Javi Gracia of Watford FC during the Pre-season Friendly match between Ajax and Watford FC- Watford fired head coach Javi Gracia amid fears Spaniard had 'gone flat'

An opening-day home defeat to Brighton & Hove Albion was followed by further losses at Everton and home to West Ham United, with the club finally scraping a point in last Saturday's 1-1 draw at Newcastle United.

This past weekend, the first Premier League sacking of the season occurred at Watford.

Watford terminated Gracia's contract on Saturday after the Hornets claimed just one point from their first four games of the Premier League season.

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 worldwide break, the pressure was building on Gracia.

Removing Gracia, however, was a tough decision to make given how popular the Spaniard was at the club and his achievements last season in reaching the FA Cup Final, a first final in 35 years.

Flores had led them to 13th in the EPL and the FA Cup semi-finals during the 2015-16 season, after which he was axed.

He had led Watford to 13th on their return to the Premier League and reached the FA Cup semi-final but departed at the end of the season with his relationship fractured, seemingly beyond fix.

"I want to thank every single person who works for this club and has made my everyday very easy". The Premier League club announced the changes in two separate statements published within minutes of each other on social media.

"I will always wish the fans and these players the best".

Hornets captain Troy Deeney spoke in support of Gracia before he was dismissed, and the 49-year-old paid tribute to those who backed him during his spell at the club.

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