Watford drew a blank as the Graham Taylor memorial game ended 0-0 at Villa Park. Both sides should’ve scored in the first half with Gabby Agbonlahor and Jerome Sinclair spurning clear cut opportunities. Henri Lansbury missed a second half penalty as Gomes once again saved a spot kick. Grealish and Kabasele were taken off injured in what is Villa’s last match before they kick their Championship season off next Saturday. I look at how the Hornets fared in this match.
Hereulho Gomes – 8/10
Little to do for the Brazilian but he stood up to the task. He made a 1 v 1 save to deny Agbonlahor although the strike wasn’t overly testing and denied Lansbury’s penalty in the second half. Dealt with everything aerially and cleared well which can only be a positive going into the season.
Craig Cathcart – 5/10
Craig is not a right back and it showed as he is not comfortable on the overlap. So he wasn’t constructive going forwards but was rarely beaten defensively. He got involved in a mis-communication with Prodl which easily could’ve been punished second half when they left the ball for each other. Janmaat and Femenia should see off him being played out of position and he can certainly be a dependable figure in the heart of the defence this season.
Christian Kabasele – 6/10
Disappointing to be taken off after just nine minutes of play. When he played the back line was a bit disfigured but he wasn’t overly tested individually.
Younes Kaboul – 4/10
Some very poor positioning from Kaboul today made his defensive task much harder. Was caught out when Agbonlahor went clean through and gave away the penalty in the second half. Not a very reassuring performance at all.
Brandon Mason – 5/10
Mason looks a little bit out of his depth at times but still has something to offer. El Mohamady had the better of him in the first half and he was hit and miss distribution wise.
Abdoulaye Doucoure – 8/10
The star man of the back end of last season was again the pick of the bunch outfield as he executed his role well. Linked the play nicely and showed some quality touches, the holding midfielder is allowing those ahead of him the opportunities to make their mark but they aren’t delivering like the Frenchman is.
Nathaniel Chalobah – 5/10
A disappointing performance on the whole from Chalobah. Too many passes went wide of the mark, you can see his intelligence is still there but the execution needs improvement. Sent a few shots high and wide.
Tom Cleverley – 5/10
I felt Cleverley didn’t really bring much to the table today and that for me re-installs my belief that he has a tall order to be a starter in this Watford side. Solid but unspectacular.
Nordin Amrabat – 6/10
The Moroccan had a decent game today getting the better of Neil Taylor on occasions. He was much more assured in possession and looked to play with a bit more intent. The problem is Amrabat suffered a lot towards the end of last season so expecting his flying performances from the start of last season are a distant memory and he doesn’t look to be the standard the Golden Boys need if they are to really damage oppositions.
Roberto Pereyra – 6/10
It’s great to see the former Juventus man back in action and on brief occasions he showed touches of class that give reason to be excited about him becoming an integral part this season. On the left hand side though he linked the play well but never stretched the opposition which again made things comfortable for Villa. Hopefully he can find a spot in the middle but it’s just great to have the Argentine back in yellow.
Jerome Sinclair – 4/10
Unfortunately Sinclair spurned his one big moment when sent through 1 v 1 with the goalkeeper as the ball went horribly wide with a very poorly taken shot. The former Liverpool youngster is always bright and offers some neat movement at times but simply isn’t up to standards on the ball yet where he can seriously become a real option up front. He needs a loan away to prove himself.
Seb Prodl – 6/10
Like Cathcart, responsible for getting caught making a decision in the second half which could’ve been punished. Other than that he handled the back line well and made few errors.
Costel Pantilimon – 5/10
Still for some reason takes ages to distribute which does the defence no favours. Had very little to do and saved routinely.
Kiko Femenia – 7/10
A very encouraging display from the Spaniard. He was worryingly the most creative player going forwards and that was from right back. Very sharp on the ball and moved it with purpose then had the ability to test the opposition in the final third with some decent crosses. A certain Juan Carlos Parades excelled on his debut from right back so that’s a reason to not get carried away but a good start.
Ben Watson – 6/10
Typical Watson performance, very steady showing.
Will Hughes – 7/10
Hughes makes things happen. He is so smart in his positions he occupies and he moves the ball well. He linked play with Femenia on the right neatly and drove into the box in the second half but couldn’t find the killer ball, positive impact made.
Do you agree with these ratings Watford fans? Let us know in the comments below!