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Hornets target double sting!

English Barclays Premiership

Watford have made a double raid for Espen Baardsen and Allan Nielsen. Our director of football David Pleat confirmed on Friday afternoon that the Hornets - relegated from the Premiership last season - had made bids for the out-of-favour duo.

Pleat revealed: "Both Espen Baardsen and Allan Nielsen are having talks with Watford. We will know soon whether or not either or both deals are going through."

Norwegian international goalkeeper Baardsen, 22, is now our third-choice stopper after the summer capture of Neil Sullivan from Wimbledon.

He impressed in a spell of 15 games after being promoted by former boss Christian Gross between August-November 1998 but George Graham reinstated Ian Walker as number one in December 1998 and that has been the case since.

Danish international Nielsen, 29, carved his name in White Hart Lane folklore by grabbing the last-minute winner in the Worthington Cup Final against Leicester City at Wembley in March 1999.

However, the arrival of Tim Sherwood earlier that season and Oyvind Leonhardsen in August 1999, plus the continuing progress of Stephen Clemence, has seen Nielsen slip down the pecking order.

He only made 17 appearances last season but impressed enough to take his place in Denmark's European Championship squad.

Photographs courtesy of Action Images Ltd.

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