Abdoulaye Doucoure says he wants January transfer away from Watford as he chases Champions League dream

The French midfielder wants international recognition, but knows he won't get that at Vicarage Road

January transfer window 2019: Premier League transfer round-up

Watford's Abdoulaye Doucoure has claimed he will leave the club this month in pursuit of Champions League football and international recognition from world champions France.

The 26-year-old midfielder has been something of a revelation since arriving at Vicarage Road two seasons ago, his all-action displays providing seven goals last year in a breakout campaign.

And now Doucoure, speaking on French television channel Canal+, has decided that he needs to leave the Hornets to fulfil his ambitions.

"Yes, I think I will leave Watford," he said.

"The club are aware of my ambitions and want to help me go up a level. So if it doesn't happen this winter we'll have a look at things this summer and the possibilities available.

Doucoure (left) would like to play alongside N'Golo Kante (right) for France 

"The most important thing for me is to continue improving, so obviously through my performances I can reach a club playing at European level.

"I think I will reach a new level by signing for another club, who are playing in European competitions."

Ultimately Doucoure's desire to play international football is driving his decision to seek a new club, with World Cup winner Didier Deschamps already spoiled for choice in French-qualified players plying their trade among the elite.

"I heard Didier Deschamps saying it's hard to pick players who aren't playing in these competitions.

"So I think I have a lot of work to do but when I go up a level the France team will be available for me.

France coach Didier Deschamps is yet to call up Doucoure 

"It's a possibility to stay in England but then there's the Italian league which is also interesting, there are clubs who have come back to the forefront of things."

Paris Saint-Germain are the club that have longest been linked with a move for Doucoure, even though they are understood to prefer Everton midfielder Idrissa Gueye.

The Watford midfielder is none the wiser on PSG links, and said there has been no contact despite his obvious interest in a move.

"I have read a lot of things about this, that PSG are looking for a midfielder," he said.

"I'm flattered by this interest but for the time being there's nothing concrete.

"Honestly, Watford haven't been contacted by PSG. Naturally I said that PSG's project interests me because I'm from the Paris region.

"But the probability honestly is very, very low because PSG are following a lot of players and I'm not their priority, that's for sure. But if there's a possibility of course we'll look at it."

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