Cote d’Ivoire defender Hassane Kamara has admitted to the difficulty of the Premier League in his first season.
Kamara signed for Watford FC from French club OGC Nice in the January transfer window as part of an influx of signings to help The Hornets avoid relegation this season. The signings, including Kamara, have not done enough to help Watford, however.
The 28-year-old spoke to BBC Sport Africa about his experience in the three months he has been at Vicarage Road facing the best in English football.
“I understand now why the Premier League is such a great show,” he told BBC Sport Africa. “It’s really difficult. I was impressed because I am a player that likes to be running a lot but I have to say this is very intense.
“Without wanting to disrespect France, here the level is really difficult. The style of play here is more direct.”
Kamara was asked about his side’s battle for survival. The Ivorian has made 15 appearances for The Hornets in the Premier League since his move from Nice and he says he is enjoying the fight to stay up.
“Playing in the Premier League was a major goal for me in my career so I was very happy to reach it,” he told BBC Sport Africa. “What is really impressive to me is the level of each player here. Whether they are well-known or not, they are as fast as I am, they have technical abilities, they are smart.
“Teams here are obsessed with scoring so as a defender I have more situations to manage. I am also very impressed by the wingers.”
Players run everywhere from kickoff in England, Kamara says
The former Stade de Reims left back also spoke about one key difference in the tactical mentality of the French Ligue 1 clubs and the Premier League clubs.
“In Ligue 1, we’re going to gauge our opponent and won’t be pressing straight away but here in England, from kick-off players run everywhere,” Kamara stated. “We play long so we run a lot, back and forth, and the referees don’t whistle a lot so the game is more fluid, intense. It never stops.”
Watford lost to Burnley at home on Saturday to further tank their chances of staying up. They were gifted the lead and a chance at three points when Burnley’s James Tarkowski turned the ball into his own net in the eighth minute. Burnley capitalised on a two-minute mishap from the Watford defence to score in the 83rd and 86th minute and make away with the three points from Vicarage Road.
The club have only four matches to turn their fortunes around or they will be playing in the Championship next season.