Troy Deeney scored a spectacular goal for Watford on Saturday evening to condemn Everton to their fourth consecutive Premier League defeat.
The two sides played out a dire clash at Vicarage Road, with the only piece of quality from the Hornets’ skipper tipping the balance in favour of the home side in the 79th minute.
Ponderous opening period
Orestis Karnezis had to be alert within the first ten minutes as Oumar Niasse found space down the left-flank. The Senegalese forward attempted to cut the ball back, only to see it take a deflection off of Sebastian Prodl. The Greek goalkeeper however did well to drop before the ball trundled into the net.
Etienne Capoue was the next to go close in a first-half of relatively little goal-mouth action. The Frenchman had an effort from the edge of the area but the ball whizzed over the crossbar. The opening period ended with neither goalkeeper really being tested all too much.
Struggles of both sides continues
Troy Deeney had the opening chance of the second-half as he connected with Roberto Pereyra’s cross. The striker’s header though looped up into the arms of Jordan Pickford. Midfielder Capoue received a yellow card only minutes after the break for a tough challenge on Theo Walcott.
There was a raft of changes just ten minutes after the interval as chances continued to be at a premium. Everton boss, Sam Allardyce introduced Cenk Tosun for Niasse. Meanwhile, Stefano Okaka and Kiko Femenia were put in place of Richarlison and Pereyra for the hosting Hornets.
Wayne Rooney did see the ball fall to him on the edge of the penalty area mid-way through the second-half. However, his first-time volley drifted over the bar. Capoue also let fly from range but similar to the Everton man, only launched his effort straight over the crossbar.
Deeney strikes for Watford
Jordan Pickford atoned for a poor clearance as he stopped Kiko Femenia’s effort, before gathering the deflection from Daryl Janmaat.
The breakthrough did eventually come with only ten minutes left on the clock at Vicarage Road. Femenia found space down the right-wing and cut the ball to Okaka, who in turn crossed to Deeney. The forward controlled, and with his right foot dispatched the ball into the top corner to snatch the lead for Javi Gracia’s men.
Stefano Okaka also displayed great strength to roll away from Michael Keane but Pickford reacted well to his low shot to keep the deficit at one goal. Pickford caused late havoc in the opposing penalty area in the final seconds with a header but that was how it remained for the rest of the clash as the hosts secured a valuable three points.
Despite, the otherwise poor play from both sides, Watford will be delighted with their victory. It was an excellent finish from Troy Deeney that secured the win in a tight affair. The Hornets are now six points clear of the penalty area.
Everton meanwhile were severely lacking in any attacking thrust. Their performance was simply not good enough to threaten the hosts. The Toffees remain in ninth in the Premier League table.
Watford: Karnezis (7); Holebas (6), Mariappa (7), Prödl (7), Janmaat (7); Capoue (6), Doucoure (6); Deulofeu (6) (Carrillo (7), 63′), Pereyra (5) (Okaka (6), 56′), Richarlison (5) (Femenia (7), 56′); Deeney (7).
Everton: Pickford (6); Martina (6), Williams (7), Keane (6), Kenny (6); Rooney (7) (Calvert-Lewin (N/A), 82′), Gueye (7), Davies (6); Sigurdsson (6) (Bolasie (N/A), 82′), Walcott (6), Niasse (5) (Tosun (5), 57′).
Goals: Deeney (79′)
Referee: Anthony Taylor
Yellow Cards: Capoue (53′), Gueye (64′), Janmaat (88′), Carrillo (90+2′)
Red Cards: N/A
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