Abdoulaye Doucoure exit inevitable because Watford cannot turn down cash - Tommy Smith

Friday, January 4th, 2019 1:15pm

By James Gray @jamestingray

Abdoulaye Doucoure is destined to leave Watford at some point but Tommy Smith hopes they can at least hang onto him until the summer.

Doucoure has started all bar one of Watford's Premier League games so far this season, helping them to eighth in the table with three goals and five assists from defensive midfield.

But the 26-year-old's form has caught the eye of the likes of Paris Saint-Germain but the Hornets rate him around the £50million mark.

Watford legend Tommy Smith is keen for the club to stick to their resolve for another six months but is concedes that some deals are too good to say no to.

"He's massively important to the team currently. He's the real engine and driving force in that midfield," Smith told The Brian Moore Show (weekdays 3pm-7pm)."He'll be a huge loss if he does leave and ultimately he probably will do.

"When you're talking about clubs the seize of PSG, Champions League football and titles, for any player that's going to be attractive.

"When you're talking £50m for a player, for a club like Watford that's enormous.

"I think if that is the kind of interest, it will only be a matter of time.

"I've seen him play a number of times and he's an exciting talent who can score goals as well.

"He's a Vieira-esque midfielder who gets up and down and gets in both boxes.

"He's quite physical and he's good on the ball as well so I'm not surprised by the interest.

"It's going to be tough for Watford to keep hold of him and hopefully they'll keep hold of him in January before seeing where things take him in the summer."

PSG boss Thomas Tuchel is keen to sign a midfielder in January to ease the transition when Adrien Rabiot leaves in the summer on a free transfer.

And Watford manager Javi Gracia admits it is inevitable that players like Doucoure will attract attention from other clubs.

"For me Doucoure is a great player, a very important player for us. It doesn't surprise me other clubs want to sign him because he's a very good player," Gracia said last week.

"Last season, every week we were talking about Liverpool or Everton, all the clubs that were interested in him. We can speak about it again.

"In this moment he's playing for us and I tried to help him to improve his level thinking he's going to be with us for a long time."

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