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Watford head coach in sole control of on-pitch matters

Beppe Sannino clarifies his role at Watford whilst looking forward to his future with the Hertfordshire club.

Upon arriving as an almost unknown when appointed Watford head coach, Beppe Sannino has had the chance to start afresh following a torrid time in Italy's league system.

A veteran of the lower leagues, his first chance in Serie A came with newly promoted Siena in 2011, before joining Palermo the following season. His career in Sicily resulted in a sacking and a reappointment in the same season, before joining Chievo in July 2013.

Only lasting until November, Sannino was hired by Watford following the departure of Gianfranco Zola in December. An impressive run of games has seen the Italian achieve a record six consecutive home victories without conceding, although the Hornets have only won away from home once since his arrival.

Struggling to find form on his arrival, Sannino spoke of the problems he faced in an interview with BBC Late Kick Off, whilst also clarifying the process of management at the club.

Alongside Head of Medical Marco Cesarini - who acted as translator for Sannino - the Italian said of his role, "In Watford, I do not act as a manager, my contract is 'head coach'. We [Sannino and Director of Football Gianluca Nani] decide together how to build the team in terms of acquisition, but on the pitch, it is his [Sannino's] decision to pick the squad."

While a strange method of operations in England, Sannino is no stranger to this European process, coming from Serie A.

"In Italy, you have always a sport director that works with you," he said.

When asked if he was brought in to do the owners bidding, as no more than a 'yes man', Sannino replied - in comical English - "yes man, I am no yes man. I am gaffer."

As well as confirming his role, Sannino also replied to criticism which has surrounded him since his arrival.

Asked about the decline in the quality of football - a quality which characterised Zola's reign - and whether that was necessary given the state of the team he inherited, Sannino replied, "Watford was conceding a lot, in terms of goals, but I think my football is organisation, and if you watch my scores from my teams, we always was [sic] one of the best defence, and one of the best attack."

Upon his arrival in December, Watford were in disarray; promotion favourites at the start of the season, Zola's men had failed to win since October, lost five consecutive home games, and were sitting in 13th.

Although their league position has only improved by one place since Sannino's arrival, the football has dramatically improved, and the defensive procedure introduced has created a sense of belief around Vicarage Road.

Given that the season is all but over for the Hornets, Sannino must be looking forward to next year, whether in the role of manager, or just as the head coach of on-pitch matters.

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