Unless you’ve been paying little to no attention to Watford’s transfer dealings, you will be very aware of the amount of moves that have taken place between the Hornets and Udinese.
After all, the two clubs are owned by the Pozzo family, with son and father owning the English and Italian clubs respectively, meaning there are few chances of deals being scuppered by bureaucratic problems.
The latest to make the leap between the two sides was Sebastian Prödl, who cancelled his contract with Watford before signing with Udinese in the Serie A.
There have been a few eyebrows raised at such dealings, as they might appear dodgy to some, but for Pierpaolo Marino, the technical director in Udine, there are no issues.
He said, relayed by TuttoMercatoWeb: “We have been criticised regarding the players that have come from Watford. For us, it’s a virtuosity. We’ve dealt for young players we wanted to bring to Udine, but they asked us for tens of millions. It’s a market drugged with figures that make it inaccessible for Udinese.
“The typical deals that characterised the club in the past can no longer be done. Nowadays, you have to pay €15m for deals that we used to pay €2-3m for before. We are unique in Italy, we have a collaboration with Watford, which is an added value for us, especially if players like Sema, Zeegelaar, Okaka and Prödl arrive.
“If we wanted to buy these players, we would have paid tens and tens of millions for them. We can afford them thanks to a virtuous collaboration. Nobody will ever convince me this is a bad thing. I only see advantages”.
Of course, he would say that seeing as Udinese do benefit a lot from this unofficial partnership between the two sides, as do the players.
If their time at Watford isn’t going to plan, there are worse places to go than Serie A to try and get things back on track.
It’s fine if the club remain in Italy’s top tier, but it would be interesting to see what would happen if they ended up getting relegated.
Udinese currently sit 15th in Serie A, eight points above the relegation zone.