Watford 0, Albion 3

There is one subject above all that people want to ask Graham Potter about as a Premier League head coach.

Yes, that’s right – the performing arts.

Potter has been fielding questions about how he used to join his squad in Sweden on stage early in his managerial career.

From us in the media. From a supporter at the fans’ forum.

Maybe even from wary players themselves.

The Albion head coach used to get his players involved in stage productions when he was in charge at Swedish minnows Ostersunds.

It was club policy, he explains. Not his own. But it makes a nice storyline.

What really counts though is how they perform on the stage of the Premier League.

And it was easy to think he got the best out of what was a very familiar cast at Vicarage Road.

Albion fielded none of their summer signings at kick-off.

But the 11 familiar faces looked like a different team as they weathered a couple of Watford storms – early in each half – and dismantled their hosts going the other way.

Potter has not had his Albion players joining in with amateur dramatics as yet.

Maybe there is no need. There was certainly no sign of any stage fright to conquer at Watford.

The boss said there was a bit of luck. And maybe there was when Abdoulaye Doucoure prodded the ball towards his own net and Ben Foster, the keeper who excelled at the Amex last season, let it trundle gently past him for the first goal.

But then, if you press enthusiastically as opponents try to pass from the back, if you get four men forward quickly and you get balls into the danger area with opponents facing their own goal, maybe you might get a break where it really matters.

Dale Stephens picked off the initial pass and was twice involved before Pascal Gross played the ball back across goal and induced the error.

The Argus:

Potter had the golden touch in the second half when he saw Florin Andone score with his very first touch after going on as sub along with Neal Maupay.

Andone swept home right-footed finish from just in front of the near post after Davy Propper had injected impetus into an attack and crossed low from the right.

The Argus:

But, again, if your response to coming under increasing pressure is to ask questions of your own, sending on two fresh faces in attack, maybe you deserve a reward.

By the time Albion added their stylish third goal, they were well on their way to only a second opening-game win since that glorious day in 2011 when ex-Watford favourite Will Buckley kicked off life at the Amex in style against Doncaster.

Replays will show a fine goal as Lewis Dunk slid a pass through the middle and Maupay exuded supreme confidence to take on Foster, go outside him and score from an increasingly tricky angle.

The Argus:

Beautifully done. But a suggestion to Watford boss Javi Gracia in his press conference that his side were picked apart by one pass was slightly misleading.

A bit like that great goal at Stoke two seasons ago, it went back further than that – to Albion passing the ball from deep, working off goalkeeper Maty Ryan and making a depressed Watford side run.

Opening night – okay afternoon, although the floodlights were turned on under grey skies – was a summer dream for Potter.

Albion had defensive organisation around the old firm of Dunk and Shane Duffy along with the outstanding Dan Burn.

The formation, a progressive mindset and quality on the ball allowed them to get men forward quickly when they had possession.

When one early counter-attack broke down due to over-elaboration, it actually felt like they had too many players forward leading to indecision. Now that never used to be a problem.

Albion, with Martin Montoya having his best game yet for the club down the right, did not make the most of some great situations in the final third when they broke in impressive numbers. That is one of the things they will work to improve.

They gifted Watford a potential route back into the game at 1-0 when Solly March, still learning a new role at left wing-back, was caught out on the byline by Kiko Femenia.

The resulting cut-back led to Andre Gray shooting goalwards and the right foot of Ryan, or the left of Dunk, diverting the ball behind.

There was a shout for handball in the wall, and therefore a penalty, after a Roberto Pereyra free-kick, which was waved away after consultation with VAR.

But Albion were generally hugely confident and well worth the win.

They took the applause of their delighted fans at full-time.

Then Potter stepped forward and clapped the supporters as they roared their approval.

The stage on matchday belongs to the players but Potter the director and producer has made a big early impact.

As Premier premieres go, this will take some beating.