Premier League

Flores defends goal-shy Ighalo after Liverpool defeat

Watford boss Quique Sanchez Flores believes his side had enough chances to draw with Liverpool at Anfield after watching his side lose 2-0 in the Premier League on Sunday.

Joe Allen put Liverpool ahead deep in the first half, before Roberto Firmino sealed the points with a deflected strike that Heurelho Gomes could not keep out.

Odion Ighalo had Watford’s best chances but the striker, who has not scored for 12 league games, was denied by Simon Mignolet when he had his clearest sight of goal and Flores defended his out-of-form forward.

“It’s a pity because we had a lot of chances with Odion in the second half of the season, but the result is final. Scoring is not easy,” Flores told BBC Sport.

“In the second half, he could have received a penalty. Yes [he should have gone down]. We didn’t use this play well.

“It’s a pity because Odion Ighalo is playing well, he has options and chances but finally he did not score, unfortunately.”

Flores felt his side created enough openings to get a positive result, but his side have now scored just four goals in nine away Premier League games.

“In the first half and the second half we had chances to draw, we had chances to score and we were very competitive during the match,” Flores said.

“Liverpool were playing with some difficulties in midfield, but we made little mistakes. We need to remove the mistakes. It’s very hard for us.”

Flores, who won the Europa League as coach of Atletico Madrid in 2010, also wished Liverpool good luck for their upcoming final against Sevilla in Basle.

“I think Liverpool is ready to play this final,” the Spaniard said. “They are a very good team, they have very good players, good substitutes also, and the possibility for Liverpool to win the Europa League is high.”

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