Zola buzzing after Hornets win on opening day

Gianfranco Zola is excited by what is to come from his new-look Watford side after their dramatic opening win against Crystal Palace in the npower Championship yesterday.

Gianfranco Zola is excited by what is to come from his new-look Watford side after their dramatic opening win against Crystal Palace in the npower Championship yesterday.

Two late goals from Almen Abdi and Matej Vydra, both on loan from Udinese, sealed a 3-2 win for the ambitious Hornets.

And Zola said: “The two new players who scored are quality players. Hopefully that is just the beginning.

“Matej Vydra is a player who has the qualities to make a good impression on this team. He is going to get better and better because he is still learning.

“The type of football we need to play is expansive and I’m learning a lot from this division. How far we can go is difficult to say, but we will give (promotion) a go.”

There were similar sentiments from Eddie Howe after his Burnley side enjoyed a 2-0 win over local rivals Bolton – and former Clarets boss Owen Coyle.

“The lads were outstanding from start to finish,” said Howe after goals from Martin Paterson and Charlie Austin. “I thought there were some gigantic performances from individuals – some great debuts – and I thought we looked like a good side.

“It’s only one game so we can’t get carried away, but it’s certainly a good performance and hopefully it will give the lads a lot of confidence.”

Steve Kean was encouraged by his Blackburn side’s display despite seeing them lose a lead to draw 1-1 with Ipswich.

Jason Lowe’s own goal cancelled out Colin Kazim-Richards’ opener but Kean said: “This is the first point on the board at a difficult venue, so I’ve got to be pleased. Ipswich are well organised and not too many teams will come here and get three points.”

Another relegated side, Wolves, made a losing start against Leeds and new boss Stale Solbakken admits his first task is to rid them of a losing mentality.

“The only way you can change it is to win that first game and get that winning feeling,” he said. “It was a fair result, there were not many chances in the game.”

Steve Bruce made a winning start in the league as Hull manager after Jay Simpson’s late goal downed Brighton 1-0.

Former Sunderland boss Bruce hailed the goalscorer, who fell out of favour under former managers Nick Barmby and Nigel Pearson, but said: “It was a typical first game of the season, and we know we’ll have to improve. The goal was the real bit of quality in the game.”

Newly-promoted pair Sheffield Wednesday and Charlton drew at Derby and Birmingham respectively, with Owls boss Dave Jones saluting his side’s travelling support.

“When we got them in at half-time, we said they had nothing to be fearful of in this division with six and a half thousand behind you,” he said.

“When they are bouncing up and down like that, the fans are some sight to see. I’ve never seen support like that away from home.”

Elsewhere, Barnsley beat Middlesbrough 1-0, Leicester were 2-0 winners over Peterborough, Tom Ince’s brace saw Blackpool past Millwall by the same scoreline and Nottingham Forest edged out Bristol City 1-0.

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