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Watford axe Xisco Munoz as talks held with title-winning Italian

The managerial merry-go-round at Watford continues as Xisco Munoz has been sacked after 10 months in charge of the club.

The 41-year-old was recruited in December last year to replace Vladimir Ivic. Serbian Ivac lasted just four months in the Vicarage Road hotseat and was jettisoned with the club fifth in the Championship. His and Xisco’s exit was no real surprise as the Hertfordshire outfit have a revolving door policy for the managers.

They have been through 17 coaches in the past decade and are now in the hunt for yet another one. Xisco leaves with the club sitting 14th in the Premier League standings following Saturday’s 1-0 loss to Leeds United. The club issued a statement on their decision to part company with the Spaniard.

It read: “Watford FC confirms Xisco Muñoz has left his post as the club’s Head Coach. The Board feels recent performances strongly indicate a negative trend at a time when team cohesion should be visibly improving.

“The Hornets will always be grateful to Xisco for the part he played in securing last season’s promotion and wish him well for his future career in football.

“No further club comment will be available until the imminent announcement of a new Head Coach.”

Xisco managed to guide Watford back to the top flight during his time at the helm. He picked up the pieces from Ivic and led them to second place in the Championship in 2020-2021 behind Norwich City.

But, whereas the Canaries have stuck with Daniel Farke despite Norwich’s poor start to the campaign, Watford have pulled the trigger.

Martinez favourite but veteran in ‘talks’ to replace Xisco

The job of managing The Golden Boys has become something of a poisoned chalice in recent times. The Pozzo family have little patience with coaches who do not deliver instant results.

The policy is one that rarely reaps rewards as players need to continually adapt to a new manager and his methods. Quique Sanchez Flores was sacked twice by the club – the second time in December 2019 after only three months in charge.

The next man in the spotlight is former Granada chief Diego Martinez. The 40-year-old was in charge of Nazaries for three years before leaving in the summer.

He managed to win more than 47 per cent of his games in charge of the Nuevo Los Carmenes outfit. However, trusted transfer guru Fabrizio Romano is adamant that veteran coach Claudio Ranieri is the man Watford want.

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The Italian won the title with Leicester City in 2015-2016 and his last job was a two-year spell with Sampdoria.

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