Date: 8th February 2014 at 9:23pm
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Watford head coach Beppe Sannino says his side did not change their tactics to nullify Leicester, stressing that his side ‘always play this system’.

The Hornets drew criticism from some sections of Leicester’s support as they set up 3-5-2, aiming to stop Leicester from playing, but as Sannino rightly pointed out, 3-5-2 is Watford’s preferred system and the counter-attacking style is nothing new.

Goals from Fernando Forestieri & Sean Murray put Watford into a two-goal lead by the 41st minute, but Matty James pulled one back for Leicester two minutes before the break.

Having resisted much Leicester pressure in the second period, Watford finally caved in the 94th minute when Danny Drinkwater fired home via the underside of the crossbar to preserve the Foxes’ unbeaten run.

Speaking afterwards to Sporting Life, Sannino defended his tactics.

‘I think we created a lot of problems for them today. But we did not change our tactics for this match. We always play this system. We were playing against a team who have a lot of pace so we had to deny them space,’ explained Sannino.

The Italian had praise for his side as well, acknowledging that they had come up against a strong side in Leicester.

‘We knew they would come back at us in the second half because they have that quality. But we also had chances to kill the game off. So, yes it was disappointing because of how late the equaliser came but I was happy with the performance.

‘It was a fair result and I think Leicester deserve to be top of the table because of their consistency this season.’

Leicester boss Nigel Pearson praised Watford’s tactics, admitting that they had effectively reduced the threat posed by his table-toppers.

‘You have got to give Watford credit. I thought their game plan was thorough and they didn’t allow us too much space behind their defenders.

‘They defended very deeply and tried to limit the opportunities for us to cause them problems. But all in all, I don’t think anyone could argue that we didn’t deserve to get something out of the game because we dominated the vast majority of it,’ said Pearson.

The former Southampton boss was also quick to note the importance of the timing of his side’s first, two minutes after Watford’s second and two minutes before half-time.

‘To score the first goal just before half time was very important for us and we then put them under an immense amount of pressure in the second-half. The goal which got us the equaliser was a stunning strike and it was a good result to keep our unbeaten run going.’

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