Chris Hughton is the favourite to become Watford's new manager after the Hornets sacked head coach Quique Sanchez Flores after just 85 days in the role.

Former Albion boss Hughton is hotly tipped to take over after the Premier League's bottom club announced the departure of their second manager of the season the day after their 2-1 defeat at fellow strugglers Southampton.

Watford chairman and chief executive Scott Duxbury said in a statement: "Quique is a man of great integrity and it was clear how much he wanted to have a positive impact, but ultimately results have dictated our decision.

"The appointment of a new head coach is imminent and, with nearly two-thirds of the season remaining, we will provide all the support necessary to make the coming months successful."

Watford said they would make no further comment until the appointment of a new head coach.

Sanchez Flores only returned for his second spell in charge at Vicarage Road on September 7, replacing Javi Gracia, who was dismissed following a poor start to the season.

But the 54-year-old, who was also at the helm for the 2015/16 season, could not reverse the club's fortunes, winning just one of his 10 league games in charge, against Norwich.

He also saw his side hammered 8-0 at Manchester City, but ultimately it was Saturday's defeat at St Mary's, where they were on course to win before conceding two late goals, which sealed his fate.

That defeat to the Saints, which followed a 3-0 home loss to Burnley, left Watford two points adrift at the foot of the table and six points from safety.

Hughton oversaw the Seagulls' rise to the top flight during his four and a half years at the club before he was axed at the end of last season.