Category: February

29th February 2020- Premier League, Watford 3 Liverpool 0

Referee: Michael Oliver
Attendance: 21,634
1-0
2-0
3-0

Match Report: Watford 3-0 Liverpool

Pearson: “We Were At Our Best”

Sarr: “I Wanted The Hat-Trick!”

Capoue: “Sarr Made The Difference”

Foster: “I Never Felt Threatened”

Reaction On Sarr: “It’s A Coming-Of-Age Performance”

Watford stun league leaders Liverpool in Premier League clash

Wonderful Watford inflict Liverpool’s first league defeat of season in stunning victory

Nigel Pearson hails Watford performance after Liverpool triumph

Watford players rated after sensational win over Liverpool

Abdoulaye Doucoure praises Nigel Pearson after Watford beat Liverpool

Jurgen Klopp says Watford victory ‘should be the headline’ after Liverpool defeat

Watford’s Gerard Deulofeu suffers ACL injury, Nigel Pearson confirms

Selection of images from Watford’s stunning Liverpool victory

Ismaila Sarr ‘disappointed’ to not score a hat-trick in Watford’s win over Liverpool

Troy Deeney promised Gerard Deulofeu Watford would beat Liverpool for him

Troy Deeney and Abdoulaye Doucoure speak of admiration for Ismaila Sarr after Watford beat Liverpool

Liverpool’s hopes of remaining unbeaten for an entire Premier League season were ended in sensational style by a rampant Watford at Vicarage Road.

This was supposed to be Liverpool’s day. It ended up being Watford’s.

Beating Liverpool could kick-start Watford’s season – Pearson

Why Watford’s win over Liverpool might be Premier League’s biggest ever upset

Sarr nipped in to break the deadlock after 54 minutes, before then racing through to double the Hornets’ lead six minutes later. With 18 minutes left to play, Watford captain Troy Deeney rounded off an incredible 18-minute spell by taking advantage of yet more sluggish defending from the visitors to add a third.

One of the greatest unbeaten streaks in the history of the English game had to end somewhere, but that it came against a club who have sacked two managers already this season and nursed a relegation death-wish since August, made this a truly surreal event.

Quite simply Liverpool were battered. From first minute until last Watford refused to display any sense of an inferiority complex against esteemed opponents and instead delivered a display of great togetherness, aggression and potency. They scored three and could have had more on a night that will be spoken about in these parts for years to come. That much could be taken from the thunderous roar that greeted the final whistle from the majority of those in attendance. A famous victory for Watford’s supporters to celebrate and one that also lifts their side out of the bottom three on goal difference and gives them renewed belief they can avoid the drop after all.

Minute by minute

“The most important thing is congratulations to Watford, well deserved,” said Klopp. “The first half there were football things that didn’t work out for us and overall we didn’t create enough and that’s what leads to a defeat. But it’s just one football game and we have to admit that Watford was the better team.”

Ismaïla Sarr.  This was it, the game when he announced himself to the rest of the Premier League.  We knew already, now everyone knows.  Time will tell how he adapts to that, how he accommodates being targeted… today he was lethal.

Deeney, Deulofeu and Pereyra had all been disappointing at Old Trafford, but had been superb in this game with even Pereyra working his socks off.  The performance of Femenía showed how much we had missed him.  What was really impressive was that, after two months out, he looked as though he had never been away.  Similarly with Sarr, who frightened the life out of the Liverpool defence, the only disappointment had been that he didn’t get his hat trick.  The midfield three of Hughes, Capoue and Doucouré had worked tirelessly and been incredibly solid.  Sometimes it is the silly things that give you immense pleasure and one of the memories that I will take from this game involved Capoue.  I love him as a player, but he can blow hot and cold.  Watching him when he is enjoying himself is utterly joyous and there was a point in the game when he sprinted from one side of the pitch to the other and back again, frustrating the Liverpool midfield and it was one of those moments that has me clapping my hands in glee.

As Watford fans we’ve had some great wins this season. We’ve also had some terrible performances. HOWEVER, today is up there with the best wins since we returned to the top flight – WE BEAT THE WORLD CHAMPIONS!!

23rd February 2020- Premier League, Manchester United 3 Watford 0

Referee: Martin Atkinson
Attendance: 73,347

Match Report: Man Utd 3-0 Watford

Pearson: “We Didn’t Take Our Chances”

Foster: “We Have To Keep Our Heads Up”

Watford face Manchester United away at Old Trafford

Watford remain in bottom three after Manchester United defeat

Nigel Pearson reflects on Watford’s missed chances after Manchester United defeat

Nigel Pearson admits Ismaila Sarr was ‘nowhere near’ close to starting Watford’s defeat at Manchester United

Watford players rated following bad day at Manchester United

Will Hughes thinks VAR decision was the turning point in Watford’s defeat to Manchester United

Manchester United striker Odion Ighalo said it was ‘special’ to hear the Watford fans sing his name

Watford goalkeeper Ben Foster critical of handball law after Troy Deeney goal is disallowed at Manchester United

January signing Fernandes capped a man-of-the-match performance in style with his first goal for the club, nonchalantly converting a penalty he had won after being fouled by Ben Foster shortly before half-time.

Anthony Martial scored an excellent second on Sunday after Watford’s Troy Deeney had a goal ruled out by VAR for handball in the build-up. Mason Greenwood, 18, lashed home his 11th of the season 15 minutes from time to complete United’s scoring.

A dreadful mix-up between Maguire and Nemanja Matic in the third minute had sent Troy Deeney through, but the Watford striker took one touch too many when the ball was crying out to be smacked or laid off to Will Hughes.

United are flaky in defence because of the gap often allowed between rearguard and midfield. Sensing this, Roberto Pereyra skated forward and found Gerard Deulofeu to the left, he passed to the unmarked Abdoulaye Doucouré and the home team were lucky he could not finish.

The final whistle went on a comprehensive defeat for the Hornets.  Unlike the Brighton game, I did applaud the players off and there was a surprisingly good atmosphere among the travelling Hornets.  The Masina-Tequila song was getting a late airing, but the volume increased considerably with a rendition of “Ighalo-oh” for old times’ sake.  Odion seemed to appreciate the gesture as he turned and applauded the Watford fans.

Fun away trips can often be ruined by 90 minutes of football and a 3-0 defeat at Old Trafford was certainly a let down. Jon, Jason and DCW talk through the faults and frustrations and really, really try to find some good to take us through to the final 10 games of the season.

8th February 2020- Premier League, Brighton & Hove Albion 1 Watford 1

Referee: Kevin Friend
Attendance: 30,443
1-0

Match Report: Brighton 1-1 Watford

Pearson: “We Worked Exceptionally Hard”

Extended Highlights: Brighton 1-1 Watford

Hughes: “We’ve Put Ourselves Back In The Mix”

Watford face Brighton and Hove Albion in the Premier League

Watford lose lead in Brighton & Hove Albion draw

Nigel Pearson reflects on Watford’s draw at Brighton & Hove Albion

Watford players rated following draw with Brighton and Hove Albion

Ben Foster said Watford did not want to sit back in Brighton and Hove Albion draw

Watford boss Nigel Pearson admitted his side had “missed an opportunity” to get a vital victory and move out of the relegation zone as Adrian Mariappa’s own goal gifted Brighton a draw.

Neither side went into the game in good form, but Watford struck first with a fine solo goal from Abdoulaye Doucoure (19), putting some demons to rest after also scoring an own goal in the 3-0 loss to Brighton on the opening weekend.

Not many own goals this season will be dispatched with the utter certainty that Adrian Mariappa directed the ball into his net as time ticked down at the Amex Stadium and it looked like another bad evening for Brighton and Hove Albion.

Minute by minute

“It’s unfortunate”, said Pearson. “We’ve worked exceptionally hard today and goals like that are very difficult to deal with. But I try to stress the importance of not becoming overly positive when things are going well or too pessimistic if things go negatively. You have a better chance of surviving if you keep your nerve.”

The game settles into a pattern from which it’ll never escape, of Brighton having great acres of possession and not really knowing how to harvest it, of Watford suffocating it all by sitting deep and gradually pushing each attack backwards, guiding a toddler out of a toy shop. It has the dramatic intensity of someone prodding a damp sponge with an old toothbrush.

It had been an awful game of football and, yet again, we had been the architects of our own downfall.  There was one moment of quality in the game, which was the gorgeous goal from Doucouré.  Although the late effort from Mooy and the save from Foster deserve a special mention.  Other than that, it was really turgid with Watford sitting deep against an ineffective Brighton attack.  It really hurt that we had lost two points due to a pointless own goal, especially as I am very fond of Mariappa, but I don’t know what he was thinking when he blasted that ball into the net.  At the end of the day, we remain in the bottom three and, while we are not yet adrift, it is hard to see where the next points are coming from.

https://podcasts.apple.com/gb/podcast/quixotic-10-33/id374798846?i=1000465062068

1st February 2020- Premier League, Watford 2 Everton 3

Referee: Craig Pawson
Attendance: 21,229
1-0
2-0

Match Report: Watford 2-3 Everton

Pearson: “We Have To Recover From This”

Extended Highlights: Watford 2-3 Everton

Cathcart: “We Need To Cut Out Those Errors”

Welbeck: “I’m Buzzing To Be Back”

Watford lose to Everton in quest for Premier League survival

Watford throw away two-goal advantage as Everton triumph at Viacarge Road

Nigel Pearson ‘exceptionally disappointed’ after Watford lose to Everton

Nigel Pearson explains Nathaniel Chalobah change in Watford’s defeat to Everton and doesn’t regret ‘positive’ substitutions

Watford player ratings following home defeat to Everton

Craig Cathcart thinks Watford have themselves to blame for Everton loss

Theo Walcott struck an injury-time winner as 10-man Everton came back from two goals down to stun Watford in a topsy-turvy encounter at Vicarage Road.

Adam Masina fired the hosts into a 10th-minute lead before Roberto Pereyra made it 2-0 three minutes before the break.

An announcement of two minutes’ added time was about to come over the Tannoy when Everton clawed a goal back. A Lucas Digne corner was poked in by Yerry Mina after his initial header was forced towards goal by Mason Holgate.

Two minutes later, deep into injury time now, another corner and Mina is criminally allowed to nod in at the far post by a sleeping Cathcart.  There’s so much wrong with this…  Mina being allowed to dominate the area, our heads not being in it.  Some of these things would be abetted with a big ugly centre back, a Ben Gibson or a Craig Dawson maybe, but not all.  It’s a maddening and horribly expensive two minutes.

There was another half chance to grab a winner for the Hornets when they got the ball into the Everton box, but no Watford man could get a meaningful touch on it.  The Hornets had been pushing for the winner, but it was the visitors who took all three points with a goal in the 90th minute.  Masina lost out in the middle of the pitch, Richarlison advanced and played in Kean who moved the ball on to Walcott, at first he appeared to have run wide of the goal, but that proved to be wishful thinking on my part as he finished past Foster. 

https://www.11v11.com/competitions/premier-league/2020/matches/

22nd February 2019- Premier League, Cardiff City 1 Watford 5

Referee:
Simon Hooper
Attendance:
30,387
Goal 1
Goal 2
Goal 3
Goal 4
Goal 5

Match Report: Cardiff City 1-5 Watford

Deulofeu: “An Amazing Day”

Gracia: “To Win Like We Did Was Outstanding”

Highlights: Cardiff City 1-5 Watford

Deeney: “We Looked Like A Real Top Team”

Affleck’s Angle: Consistency Is Key

FPL Review: Gameweek 27

Watford take on Cardiff City in Friday night Premier League clash

Gerard Deulofeu scores a hat-trick as Watford beat Cardiff City 5-1

Javi Gracia thinks Watford can achieve something special after Cardiff City win

Watford’s players rated after they thump Cardiff City in the Premier League

Ben Foster vows Watford will continue to push on after Cardiff City thrashing

Images of all the goals from Watford’s 5-1 win at Cardiff City

Gerard Deulofeu scored Watford’s first top-flight hat-trick since 1986 as they boosted their hopes of a Europa League spot by cruising to victory at Cardiff.

Deulofeu opened the scoring in the 18th minute in a first half where Cardiff felt they should have had a penalty when Josh Murphy went down in the box under a strong challenge from Daryl Janmaat (42).

Deulofeu had not scored for eight matches but looked as if he was back playing for Barcelona as he ran riot in the second half. Abdoulaye Doucoure headed Bennett’s free-kick clear and into the path of the former Everton player, who knocked the ball past Manga on the halfway line, before taking it round Neil Etheridge and slotting home his fifth goal of the season.

His third also came thanks to generous defending, this time from Harry Arter, who was intercepted by Etienne Capoue. The Frenchman sent Deulofeu through and he finished neatly. Not content with his offing, Deulofeu then switched flanks, and burst through on goal again after 73 minutes. He looked on for a fourth, but instead side-footed into the path of Deeney, who deserved to be on the scoresheet. Cardiff pulled one back nine minutes from time after Bamba latched on to a loose ball during a frenzied goalmouth scramble, but there was little interrupting the scenes of adulation in the away end, and Deeney completed the rout ­after 90 minutes from a Will Hughes lay-off.

The final whistle went sparking wild celebrations in the away end.  The players all came over to celebrate with the crowd and the songs and cheers went on for some time.  Deulofeu secured the match ball, despite an attempt by Doucouré to steal it.  As the others left him to it, he stood alone in front of the away fans while we told him he was magic.  It was a lovely moment.

What started off a tetchy, nerve-wracking evening turned out to be one of the best games of the season. Watford were sublime in the second half and produced one of the finest counter-attacking displays I have ever seen. Deulofeu was a man possessed as he embarrassed the Cardiff back line with some superb finishes.