Gracia praises "important" Gray following FA Cup victory
Photo by Getty Imgaes/Dan Istitene

Gracia praises "important" Gray following FA Cup victory

The Watford boss also spoke of the great performance on the day and the opportunity that lies ahead. 

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James Baldwin

A 79th minute winner from Andre Gray - who had only come on minutes earlier - ensured that Watford beat Crystal Palace 2-1 and reached the FA Cup semi-Final for the second time in four seasons.

Javi Gracia was, as expected, full of praise for his whole squad - especially the impact-sub.

The semi-final

Gracia was notably excited about the prospect of travelling to Wembley Stadium for their semi-final fixture.

"It's an important day for us to enjoy a semi-final, we are keeping the same level, competing well and that is our target at the moment."

The boss also went on to discuss the prospect of his side getting further than the last four.

"We will see what we'll be able to achieve in the future, I don't know if we'll be able to play in the final but that's the target.

"We want to be able to enjoy the semi-final, of course, but we want to be in the final and want to have the same mentality we have had all season. Be competitive, and game-by-game I think we will be able to achieve something this season."

Much ambition from Gracia as we've seen all season - and now the trophy does seem to be in sight for the Hornets.

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Super Sub Gray

Gray has now scored in his last three home games after coming off the bench - against Everton, Leicester and now Palace - and in each of those games, he has scored the winning goal.

Gracia, rightly so, was full of praise for the Englishman.

"He always has a good chance to score and scores important goals for the team, he deserves it and I am happy for him."

Furthermore, he spoke about the tough decision it was to bring Gray on in the first place.

"It was a difficult decision because the game was open, and to take off Will [Hughes], put Gerard [Deulofeu] on the right and Andre up front with Troy [Deeney] was difficult, but it was good for the team."

Certainly, it was. Gracia has the nice issue of choice in who to play in numerous positions - for the FA Cup matches, is it Hereulho Gomes or Ben Foster who should be played in goal? Does Gray warrant a start following superb impact performances in recent weeks; even though Deulofeu and Hughes are both playing good football as well?

It's a very nice dilemma for the Watford boss to have - however hard it may be.

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