If you ever find yourself walking around a museum, keep your eyes peeled for Watford's Spanish goalkeeper Manuel Almunia.

The 35-year-old joined the Hornets in the summer of 2012, after eight years with Arsenal, during which time he familiarised himself with some of London's most famous museums and landmarks.

And now, as Almunia and his Watford team-mates challenge for promotion in the npower Championship, he continues to relax away from the game, enjoying frequent educational trips - not your stereotypical footballer pastime.

"I don't see too many other players when I'm visiting museums," joked the Spaniard.

"A lot of the lads aren't interested in culture and prefer instead to play golf, go shopping or play on their iPads - it is bad. Museums help me relax and learn, but I also enjoy them.

"It started when I was at Arsenal. In particular, I love the Imperial War museum. I've been there five or six times and I enjoy learning about the civil war.

"I've read a lot about the Civil War and Second World War and it is good to see actual action footage of them, and find out more about them.

"I like seeing who took part, while the museum itself is also beautiful. It is good for people to educate themselves and learn about the past."

The stopper moved to England in 2004, where he initially provided back-up for regular Gunners 'keeper Jens Lehmann.

He went on to make over 100 appearances for Arsene Wenger's side, though, and as his time in England continues with Watford, his to-do list is also expanding.

"When you come to London as a visitor or to live, the museums are on your list of things to see and do.

"I made a long list when I came here of things to visit and I had several museums on that list. The Natural History Museum is also lovely, it's huge, so you have to go two or three times to try and see everything.

"I would still like to visit the HouseHold Cavalry Museum and just keep learning about the history of England."

In his own words, Almunia likes to switch off from football and, therefore, suggests a visit to the National Football Museum in Manchester isn't on his agenda.

However, he admits that if he were in the area it would be a good way to catch up with one of his former team-mates, Robin van Persie, who is firing all cylinders for the Premier League leaders.

And while Van Persie is shining in the top flight, things have been going well for Almunia and co at Watford.

"So far we have done well, it has been a good season for us.

"We had many players [come into the team] and to get all of them playing together was difficult, but everyone now knows each other, we are all set up very well and the team is improving.

"We are getting better with every game."

According to Almunia, the main reason as to why Watford have started to find consistency is down to manager Zola, who took over from Sean Dyche in the summer.

He believes the former Chelsea striker has done well to keep the players happy and motivated.

"Gianfranco is a great boss. He understands the players and their needs. He has a good handle of the situation because he was a top player himself and while he's young, he already has a lot of experience as a manager.

"I think when you come to a club and there are so many signings and new players, even a lot of existing players from last season, it is hard to collate them into one team.

"It's difficult because you have players who are unhappy because they don't play, but now everyone knows their role in the team and we are all supportive of each other.

"We are all pushing in the same direction, which is good for the manager. He doesn't have a problem with the players because they are very honest and hard working, and that has helped."

Almunia, in particular, is happy to be involved every week after spending much of last season in and out of the Arsenal first team, with three other goalkeepers - Wojciech Szczesny, Vito Mannone and Lukasz Fabianski - at Wenger's disposal.

Now, he's hoping he can use his experience of the Premier League to help his new team win promotion.

"I'm very pleased with the way things are going. I am feeling better and better with every game.

"The main difference between this league and the Premier League is the intensity. The Championship is very intense. In the Premier League you are called into action at certain moments where as in the Championship I feel I touch the ball more.

"That's good because it keeps me warm, but it also helps me concentrate and I enjoy the intensity.

"There are good players at this level, too. But in this league any one team can beat another, it happens every week and makes the league very competitive and hard for every team.

"But I believe the team who can enjoy two or three wins on a row can finish towards the top of the league, and that's the way we are going now."

Watford's recent prosperous run has lifted them to fourth in the table and on the cusp of an automatic promotion place.

The experienced goalkeeper doesn't look at the standings, though, he is purely focused on picking up those all-important three points.

"Some players do [look at the table], but I don't. I enjoy games and I enjoy victories but away from the game I relax.

"Looking at the table after a defeat can heighten the disappointment. It doesn't matter where we are now. All that matters is the team we're playing the following Saturday, that's the way to succeed I believe."

And as for relaxing away from football, it's back to the to-do list for the amiable Spaniard.

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