In the 2006/2007 season, Watford finished on bottom of the Premier League with 28 points. While it looks like it’ll be a while before Watford gets promoted from the Championship again given their current league form, the ghosts of Watford past are still alive and well in the Premier League today.
There were two players that showed a lot of promise during that 2006/2007 season for Watford, but who weren’t able to shine for several different reasons. Those players are Ashley Young, now with Aston Villa, and Marlon King, now at Hull City.
Watching the Watford side from a couple of years ago, you would have been hard pressed to predict that these players would go on to greatness. When Young joined Villa in January 2007, a lot of people thought the £9.6 million fee was excessive. Young, at the time, seemed very rough around the edges except for a few glimmers of skill here and there. He has since gone on to become an integral part of the Villa side and is one of the best left foot crossers in the league today.
Marlon King was less an unknown at the time after his success earlier in his career at Nottingham Forest. But King was only able to score four goals that season after being hampered by injuries. This season, King has already scored four crucial goals in the league and it’s only early December.
Watching Watford a couple of seasons ago, it was frustrating watching King play because he would get those rare chances in front of goal to knock the ball in but seemed to be lacking the skill or confidence to score. This season, King seems like a player reborn. Perhaps his maturity is allowing him to be more cool under pressure as he slots the ball into the back of the net.
So while many football fans will laugh at the memories of Watford from the 2006/2007 season, I look back and feel glad I was able to watch two players move up from the ranks within Watford on to greater glory.