Gracia happy at Watford, but plans Spain return in the future
Despite assuring Hornets fans that he’s not thinking leaving this summer, he is attracted by the idea of coaching in his homeland
Although rumours have arisen linking Javi Gracia with a return to Spain, the Watford manager has assured Hornets fans he has no intention to return this summer.
In his first full season as boss, Gracia has led Watford to 11th in the Premier League and to the FA Cup final at Wembley, where they’ll play Manchester City on Saturday.
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But, while the 49-year-old acknowledged he’d like to coach in his homeland someday, Gracia said his immediate future is with Watford as his family has just settled into life in England.
“I’ll go back to Spain, that’s 100 per cent,” Gracia said to Spanish website Estadio Deportivo .
“I do not know when, because I have a long contract here. You never know what’s going to happen, but I’ll come back. Although right now I don’t even think about it.
“I like to enjoy my profession and I believe that here, on a daily basis, I have very good conditions to do it.
“Five fields at my disposal, a training centre, very private, very welcoming, with many possibilities and I also have a team with which to compete in the Premier League.
“On a professional level it is a challenge and also a very nice opportunity to develop my profession. Apart from this, I believe that the living conditions are good, my family is comfortable, my children also. Those are the most important things.”
Ever since the Pozzo family bought Watford in 2012, there has been a revolving door feel to the manager’s position with bosses serving in short spells.
But the club seem to have settled on Gracia, as he signed a four-and-a-half-year contract in November 2018.
And the Spaniard believes this stability has allowed him to exude his authority over the players.
“Yes, it’s something that goes out of the ordinary,” he said.
“The list of coaches in recent years is extensive and it is not usual for a coach to start a second season.
“It had not happened for many years. It is not usual to renew the contract as I did for four more years.
“What it does is reinforce you, not only internally but also externally. It gives you an authority in front of players, and they will say, ‘hey, this coach is going to be here longer, it’s not going to be like the previous ones that have been a short cycle’.
“That generates a little more confidence in your work.”