Roberto Pereyra, 27, signed for Watford from Juventus in the summer of 2016 for a reported €13 million, but things haven’t exactly gone to plan for the Argentinian after injuries restricted his time on the pitch.
He played a total of 2,764 minutes in his first two seasons with the Hornets, which amounts to just 30 games, but he did manage to score 7 goals and set up 6 in that time. Pereyra ended the 17/18 campaign strongly, with three goals and an assist in his last 6 games and he’s continued this great form into the new season.
Pereyra has started all three of Watford’s games so far in the 18/19 Premier League season, playing a total of 267 minutes, and has been in imperious form scoring three goals in as many games. The Hornets began with a 2-0 victory over Chris Hughton’s Brighton at Vicarage Road with Peryra scoring both goals, that was followed up by a 3-1 away win at Turf Moor against a tough Burnley side, before Pereyra was once again on the scoresheet in a 2-1 home victory over Crystal Palace.
Pereyra’s form has been integral in Watford being one of only two teams at the time of writing to have a 100% record in the division this season, with the Hornets also making their best ever start to a Premier League campaign. Many people had tipped Javi Gracia’s men to struggle this season, especially with the departure of Richarlison to Everton and not major amounts of cash spent in the transfer market, but they’re currently flying and Pereyra has certainly played a key role so far.
What Pereyra can do from his position on the left-hand side is add that bit of magic and quality that every good team needs. He’s not only a goal scorer, but he’s a creator, and he can hurt any team in the division when he’s on form. The former Juventus man has already formed a good understanding with José Holebas down Watford’s left and this will stand them in good stead with a couple of tough games coming up against Spurs and Manchester United.
Both Pereyra and Holebas managed to get on the scoresheet against Palace, even though the latter’s strike was initially a cross, and in this form, they will certainly fancy their chances against both sides. They look a side rejuvenated after their first pre-season under Javi Gracia, especially after they won only one of their last nine games of the 17/18 campaign, losing six. If they can build on their perfect start, they could be one of this season’s surprise packages, much to the delight of Hornets fans.
Javi Gracia will certainly be hoping key man Pereyra can continue the great form he has already produced, while he’s likely to be asking more of his strikers in terms of goals, as he looks to keep the momentum going at Vicarage Road next time out against Spurs this coming Sunday.