The 2022/23 Championship playoff race looks set to be a fascinating one, with just five points separating third and 15th, and both Norwich and Watford are involved – looking to return to the Premier League at the first time of asking. Hosts Norwich go into this game just outside the playoffs, below sixth-placed Middlesbrough on goal difference having fallen away post-World Cup.
Although Norwich returned from the World Cup break with a 1-0 victory over Swansea, they are now winless in their pat three games, losing two and drawing one. First they weer beaten 2-0 by Blackburn Rovers at Carrow Road before losing to 10-man Luton Town on Boxing Day, with the latter proving to be the last straw with regards to Dean Smith, who was sacked. The losing streak was stopped with a 1-1 draw with Reading, but Norwich are now winless at home in four matches.
Watford have also struggled post-World Cup with one win from four, but they have managed to stay in the play-off spots as things stand, sitting fifth, one point above Norwich. Like Norwich, Watford are also under different management from the start of the season, though Slaven Bilic’s appointment came a lot earlier back in September.
In their first game back from the World Cup, Watford were held to a goalless draw by Hull City but they bounced back to beat Huddersfield Town, ending a two-match winless streak. But they have been unable to build on that win, losing their past two games without scoring, first beaten 2-0 by Millwall before a 4-0 thumping at the hands of Swansea.
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Norwich vs Watford match stats
Teemu Pukki remains the main man for Norwich, but he has added assists to his game this season. The Finnish striker has been directly involved in 13 goals in the Championship so far this season, scoring eight and providing a further five assists.
Norwich will also be hoping to cause a threat from set pieces, particularly corners. Only West Brom (174) have won more corners than Norwich’s 168 in the Championship this season, with the Canaries averaging 6.72 per game.
15 October 2022 – Watford 2-1 Norwich – Championship
21 January 2022 – Watford 0-3 Norwich – Premier League
18 September 2021 – Norwich 1-3 Watford – Premier League
20 April 2021 – Norwich 0-1 Watford – Championship
26 December 2020 – Watford 1-0 Norwich – Championship
Watford have dominated this fixture of late, winning six of the past seven meetings with Norwich, including each of their last three visits to Carrow Road. They will also be looking to do the league double over Norwich for the fourth time.