Watford soars past miserable Bournemouth
Abdoulaye Doucoure had a goal and an assist as Watford leapt out of the drop zone with a 2-0 win over Bournemouth at the Vitality Stadium.
Troy Deeney and Roberto Pereyra also scored and Ismaila Sarr was a constant threat for the Hornets.
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Watford has four wins inside of a five-match unbeaten run under Nigel Pearson and moves 17th with 22 points.
That’s two points better than the Cherries, who sit 19th with 20 points.
Three things we learned
1. Sarr shows what got him to Watford: Senegalese youngster Sarr has experienced in an uneven start to life in the Premier League, but there have been plenty of positives. Last season saw Sarr become a double-digit goal and assist man at Stade Rennais, earning a splashy move to the Hornets.
Sarr’s steal and terrific assist put Watford up 1-0, and he did the lion’s share of the lifting on the second. He entered the day with four goals and two assists in around 1000 minutes for Watford. At his best, Sarr is making himself a huge threat on the other side of Gerard Deulofeu (even if he looks dejected to come off in the 83rd minute).
2. Ice cold Wilson, snake bit Fraser killing Cherries: Callum Wilson had another rough outing to stretch a brutal run into mid-January. He finished a run of five goals in four Premier League matches on Sept. 28. His only goal or assist since that run came against Luton Town in the FA Cup last week. He had 15 and 10 last season.
Ryan Fraser is also struggling, though the effort and craft remain on display sans end product. Fraser was one of the few Cherries to show up on Sunday but has a goal and just three assists this season and nothing since Nov. 23. Last season? Eight and 15.
3. Deputy Travers gets no help : A minor injury suffered by 21-year-old Aaron Ramsdale led to an even younger starting goalkeeper for Bournemouth. Irish backstop Mark Travers got the call, his first PL match of the season after starting in all three of the Cherries’ cup outings. He kept a clean sheet against Spurs in his PL debut last season but then conceded five times in the season finale. It was more of the latter than the former in his two-save Sunday, as Travers gave the ball away a few touches before Watford’s opener.
Man of the Match: Doucoure, Sarr, Deeney, and Etienne Capoue were the standouts for Watford, and Doucoure was ready to go from Moment No. 1 to get our nod.
Ismaila Sarr raced down the right wing off a Bournemouth giveaway, but his touch put him out wide and his ball toward the back post was wide and absent receiver.
At the other end, a long Harry Wilson drive took two turns before Ben Foster recovered it to stifle the threat.
In-form Gerard Deulofeu forced a fine save out of young goalkeeper Mark Travers, who saw the ensuing corner nodded wide of the frame.
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Bournemouth had plenty of the play, but Watford went ahead through a Travers giveaway quickly turned into a goal by Sarr and Doucoure.
The game lifted a bit for the Cherries upon the introduction of Philip Billing and Lewis Cook, but Deeney shut it down with an arrow into the back of the net following incredible work from Sarr.
Deulofeu led a break that ended with a Travers save of a Deeney bounded shot.
The Hornets put it to bed when Andre Gray saw his shot cleared off the line and Pereyra settled the rebound and slotted home.