Gabriele Angella has claimed that his career has been on a downward trajectory since he left Watford unceremoniously back in September 2015.

The 30-year old defender, who played an important part in Watford achieving promotion five years ago, believes that from a playing perspective he had earned the chance to test himself against the elite in the Premier League.

In the wake of his transfer to QPR, some Watford supporters thought that Angella had what it takes to cut it in the top-tier of English football after making a great impact in the Championship.

And Angella, who refuses to hold anyone in particular accountable for how things ended with the “club of his life”, believes that he was as good a defender as any of those who followed in his footsteps in the past four-and-a-half years.

“I absolutely feel the promotion was mine," he said.

"I think a lot about those days and harbour a lot regrets because my career changed for the worse since I left Watford. I have regrets because I feel that I deserved a chance to play and test myself in the Premier League.

“My former partner [Craig] Cathcart, who went on to prove that he is a quality player, got a chance and I think that I also warranted a chance to showcase my skills because I definitely feel not inferior to him or to anyone else that came after me. But that’s how football is. There are many components that describe and influence a footballer’s career.

“That said, I am sure I could have held my own with Watford in the Premier League and I also made those feelings known within the club before I left for QPR. But I did not only say it, I also did my talking on the pitch in the few games that I played in pre-season, such as in the old Capital One Cup.

“By putting in a great performance that day I proved that I could cut it at the highest level. But then a new manager came in. Initially Quique Sanchez Flores told the media that I was good enough for the Premier League, then he sold me."

Angella feels that, throughout his career the footballing fates have conspired to torment him. After climbing to the top of English football, he was given just a brief glimpse of the Premier League before it was once again taken away from him.

"It went how it went and I feel sad about it because from that point on my career was never the same and declined," he said.

"I do not deny that I might have made the one or two mistakes but I mainly blame other people for how negatively my career panned out since.

“I feel that I should and could have been protected on the club’s behalf because I always rolled up my sleeves and worked my socks off for Watford in my time there. But that’s life, that’s football.”