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'Sarr's quality important for relegation-threatened Watford' - Hodgson

13:48 GMT+4 01/04/2022
Ismaila Sarr, Emmanuel Dennis
The Hornets are hoping the Senegal winger will be involved in the top-tier outing on Saturday against the second-placed Reds

Watford manager Roy Hodgson is confident his winger Ismaila Sarr will play a vital role in helping the team get a positive outcome against Liverpool in the Premier League.

On Tuesday, the Senegal international scored to help the Lions of Teranga win the penalty shootout 3-1 against Egypt to seal a place in the 2022 World Cup after an aggregate 1-1 score.

With the Hornets fighting relegation, Hodgson believes the quality of Sarr might impact his teammates positively.

"It’s great when [players] go away, and come back fit, but it’s even better when they come back like Sarr, celebrating that his team has now qualified for the World Cup..." Hodgson said ahead of the Saturday game.

"[Sarr’s] been recovering today. His chances of being involved are okay, as long as he shows us [on Friday] that he’s recovered from 120 minutes, and both games.

"It has been a hard journey for him playing for Senegal, but a very successful one, so that’s buoyed his spirits I’m sure.

"I am pretty certain he’ll put his hand up tomorrow to be asked to come into the starting line-up, and as far as I am concerned, a player of his quality will be very important for the club if we are going to pull ourselves away from the relegation zone because you can’t do it without players of that quality."

The tactician has been impressed with the way players are fighting for their positions, including Nigeria international Emmanuel Dennis.

"I think the competition for places has become hotter, '' Hodgson continued.

"I was happy with [Craig] Cathcart, I was happy with Tom Cleverley, and Dennis, Sarr and [Joshua] King, but the other players that have come in have made me think.

"That’s good going forward. We need to keep these players fit, keep the competition going, but most important of all this club needs spirit!

"If Watford survive this year, it will be partly because the players have shown themselves to be good enough, but it will be because the spirit is good, and they’ve really wanted it."

Watford are in the 18th position with 22 points after playing 29 games.