Tag: Dec29

29th December 2018- Premier League, Watford 1 Newcastle United 1

Jon Marks BBC 3CR commentary   Goals: 1

Match Report: Watford 1-1 Newcastle United

Gracia: “The Game Was Difficult”

Doucouré: “A Good Lesson For Us”

Highlights: Watford 1-1 Newcastle United

Gallery: Watford v Newcastle United

Relive our coverage of Watford’s final game of 2018 against Newcastle United

Watford vs Newcastle United: Abdoulaye Doucoure salvages a point

Watford vs Newcastle United: Javi Gracia defends decision to make six changes

Our Watford player ratings against Newcastle United

A selection of images from Watford’s draw with Newcastle United

The Watford manager made six changes to his starting XI as his side played a third Premier League game in eight days. When asked if that was too many he said: “If you see the result you can say that, but I don’t agree.

Salomon Rondon gave the visitors a surprise lead in the first half (29) shortly after Gerard Deulofeu squandered a great opportunity to put the hosts in front. But Watford grabbed a deserved equaliser through substitute Doucoure (82), who converted his powerful header from close range.

The visitors will feel they should have finished Watford off in the second half as Rondon headed over from Ritchie’s cross and the latter player shot straight at Foster. But they lacked a cutting edge and while they played with plenty of heart it was not enough to hold on as Watford, who had failed to offer much of note themselves, eventually exposed poor defending eight minutes from the end.

Doucouré gave the hosts more security and thrust in midfield when introduced by Gracia and headed an equaliser from 10 yards after a rare accurate delivery by Deulofeu.

Newcastle hit us with their stock goal and it’s a Neal Ardley to Heidar Helguson tribute act. Matt Ritchie swings a beast of a cross in from the left to our far post and Rondón rises to dump a header past the helpless Ben Foster. Newcastle aren’t a great side, Ray Lewington’s Watford side weren’t great either however lovable but that goal more than kept us up and it’ll keep them up too.

That is the second time that we have played Newcastle this season and the second time that we have come away frustrated.  The visitors were certainly more impressive than they had been at St James’ Park, but we should have challenged them more.  They had come to put 10 men behind the ball and Watford just couldn’t find a way to break them down.  While there had been a lot of changes, the starting XI should have been good enough to create more than they did in the first half.  The performance was considerably better when Deeney and Doucouré came on.  They battled more when the opposition had the ball and we generally looked more dangerous.  We also missed Holebas’s attacking prowess.

Newcastle came with a game plan and it almost paid off. Watford were too slow and couldn’t breakdown a resolute defence.

26th December 2018- Premier League, Watford 1 Chelsea 2

Referee:
Martin Atkinson
Attendance:
20,415

Jon Marks BBC 3CR commentary   Goals: 1

Match Report: Watford 1-2 Chelsea

Cathcart: “We Pushed Them All The Way”

Gracia: “You Need To Take The Chances You Have”

Highlights: Watford 1-2 Chelsea

Affleck’s Angle: A Rare Gift

Gallery: Watford v Chelsea

Relive our coverage of Watford’s Boxing Day defeat to Chelsea

Eden Hazard scores twice as Watford lose to Chelsea

Javi Gracia reflects on Watford’s defeat to Chelsea

Images from Watford’s defeat against Chelsea at Vicarage Road

Watford vs Chelsea: Christian Kabasele posts injury update

Eden Hazard scored both goals for Chelsea as they beat Watford 2-1 at Vicarage Road to move back into fourth place in the Premier League.

Watford will feel they had enough chances to get something from the match at Vicarage Road as they suffered their first loss in four Premier League matches.

Like Sarri, Watford manager Javi Gracia had named an unchanged team, but, having tried to carry on, Kabasele had to be replaced by Adrian Mariappa in the 16th minute.

It took until first-half stoppage time for the game to witness its first shot on target, whereupon two goals were scored in three minutes. First Étienne Capoue gave the ball away in midfield. Mateo Kovacic took control, played in Hazard and the Belgian rounded Foster before passing into the net. A minute later Watford might have equalised after Deeney’s header set up Abdoulaye Doucouré, who had already seen one effort blocked and another go high, for a shot this time saved by Kepa Arrizabalaga. From the corner José Holebas lifted the ball to the edge of the area and Roberto Pereyra rifled a volley into the corner of the net, the second time this season that a similar routine has led to a goal.

The visitors however always looked dangerous and shortly before the hour mark, Watford gifted the Chelsea the chance to take the lead. A ball over the top of the Watford defence found Hazard. Foster came out of his goal in an attempt to win ball, but instead clattered into Hazard and the referee had no choice but to point to the spot. Hazard took the spot kick and sent Foster the wrong way.

Yet again, we were ruing missing our chances as we could easily have won a point in that game.  But, on the positive side, we were reflecting on a game in which we had matched one of the best teams in the country.  Watford no longer look like plucky underdogs in these games, but are playing with a similar quality to these household names.  There were regrets regarding the two penalties.  Watford’s would have been given on another day.  Chelsea’s was an unnecessary challenge by Foster but, given how well he has done for us this season, it is hard to criticise.

29th December 1982- Division One, Watford 2 West Ham United 1

Note the ‘Wear Your Badge’ article in the last page of the programme aimed at Junior Hornets.  Occasionally these badges appear for sale on eBay and often the seller has no idea that they are connected to the club, sometimes even listing them as being badges of different Watford sports clubs.  I don’t remember the idea lasting more than a season and they must be a very rare piece of club memorabilia.

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