Financial woe helps Mackay focus
Mackay has guided the Championship side to 13th place in the table in his first season in charge, despite continuing financial troubles at Vicarage Road. Key players Mike Williamson and Tommy Smith were both sold to Portsmouth to raise funds in August and last month the club came close to administration and a 10-point penalty until Lord Ashcroft stepped in to repay a £4.5million loan to exiting chairman Jimmy Russo. Mackay's band of young players and astute loan signings have maintained a position five points short of the play-off zone throughout, and the former West Ham and Norwich defender admits he is simply looking forward to a day without any pressure at Stamford Bridge. He said: "We have had a week where I have had to try and extend players' loans and monitor injuries so it's not been ideal, but nothing is as unsettling as what we have been through in the last few weeks. "The distraction off the field over the last month or so has been very tough to deal with but the only way to get through it is by being honest with the players. "You can't shield the players from it as we were headline news for a few days so we had a few meetings where we sat them down and let them know the situation. "I was in regular touch with the board and was well aware of what was going on. We treat them like adults and make sure they know the full story, but they can only affect what happens on the pitch and they have been superb. "I have been at the club for five years now so I am immersed in everything that goes on. It has been very difficult but hopefully we are back on track now." Chelsea v Watford. Click here to bet.
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