Emmanuel Dennis was sharp in front of goal for the Hornets despite relegation last season, and will be looking to prove he was no one-season wonder. Rhian Brewster on the other side also has a point to prove and could be one to keep an eye on.
The Hornets will want to hit the ground running under new manager Rob Edwards. Sheffield United showed encouraging signs under Paul Heckingbottom so it could be a lively encounter with Watford’s quality coming out on top.
There is mixed news for the two recent Premier League sides as they look to reclaim their places back in the top flight of English football.
Between them, they are two of the favourites for promotion (Watford are second behind only Norwich while the Blades are sixth-favourites to go up) and for an opening fixture it marks an intriguing checkpoint for where they both are at the start of another campaign.
The Hornets went down with a whimper in the Premier League last season after a promising start, and have not fared much better in pre-season.
However they have managed to keep hold of the likes of Emmanuel Dennis and Ismaila Sarr (so far) in the transfer window and despite ongoing interest, Rob Edwards will have them to call upon in his first competitive game in the dugout.
The Blades meanwhile are without five key figures in their squad, particularly talismanic striker and captain Billy Sharp (along with Jack O’Connell, Jayden Bogle, Adam Davies and Tommy Doyle) while Morgan Gibbs-White is back at Wolves after a productive loan spell, pointing to a difficult night ahead for Paul Heckingbottom’s side.