Date: 4th July 2006 at 2:09pm
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Watford`s players returned to their London Colney training ground yesterday to undertake a series of fitness tests in preparation for the 2006/07 Premiership campaign.

“I’m glad to say that everybody’s looked after themselves very professionally, as I would’ve expected from this group of players,” Watford supremo Aidy Boothroyd told the club`s official site. “And now everybody goes away for another two weeks with a program ready to start back on the seventeenth.”

Former England international defender Chris Powell, who recently completed his move to Vicarage Road on a one-year deal, was at Watford`s training ground for the first time during the tests and Aidy reiterated that the experienced defender was signed not only for his playing ability, but also to help other players in their development.

“I’ve brought Chris here because Chris is not just a fantastic character. That will be very important to me as well, but he’ll be a big influence in the dressing room – a professional influence.”

“Other players sponge off him and that’s why he’s here. He’s another Alec Chamberlain; he’s another Malky Mackay another Gavin Mahon and Marlon King. He’s going to be excellent for us I’m sure about that.”

Meanwhile, Watford have given two young strikers Scholarships – Liam Henderson, 16, joins from Hartlepool United while Ewan Clarke, 16, joins from Notts County. Academy manager David Dodds told the club`s official site: “Ewan and Liam are both strikers with immense potential and we expect great things from them.”