Watford really came to life as they blew Preston away in the second half to win 4-1 at Vicarage Road. Goals from Quina, Deeney, Chalobah and Joao Pedro topped off an enjoyable afternoon for the Hornets, here is how I rated them individually.
Ben Foster – 7/10
Made a key block with his left hand at 1-0 in the first half following a disastrous mistake from Gray and also tipped one over the bar early on when Preston were just as likely to find the back of the net. Helpless for the deflected goal in the second half, Foster’s work was not overly taxing but a fine job nonetheless.
Jeremy Ngakia – 8/10
Whilst others came to life in the second half the right back was a constant both with his defensive and offensive duties throughout the 90 minutes. All of Preston’s good work really came down Watford’s left hand side which is testament to Ngakia’s excellent positioning. He used the ball well and should’ve had an assist for a neat dink to the back post where Deeney missed a glaring chance.
Christian Kabasele – 8/10
An imposing performance from Kabasele who bossed his opponents physically from start to finish. The only question mark over his performance was getting caught out in the second half where both he and Cathcart sandwiched the Preston forward before he went down which at least asked the question of the referee. Other than this he was always on the front foot, intercepting well and looked in control through this display.
Craig Cathcart – 7.5/10
A steadying influence at the heart of the defence, Cathcart won his duels well although his poor clearance in the first half resulted in a Garner yellow card as he had to react to a promising attack which was handed to Preston. Did a great job to flick on Garner’s corner which assisted the fourth goal but another assertive match from the defender.
Kiko Femenia – 7.5/10
Convincing would be the word to sum up this showing and is an encouraging word for Watford fans as the Spaniard slotted in at left back, where they are otherwise vacant in this position in their squad. His instant control and link up play continues to make him one of Ivic’s stand out performers thus far. He is very much a confidence player and it is nice to see him use this at the minute to drive at his opponents a bit more. He forced a decent stop from range in the first half to demonstrate this. He was found wanting with his positioning in defensive areas on a couple of occasions but his fine form continues.
Ismaila Sarr – 7.5/10
Still not giving full backs nightmares like he should be but this was a game where Sarr proved decisive in key moments. A far more event contest early on was separated by a wonderful cross which Sarr put on a plate for the onrushing Quina at the far post. You always felt Watford needed a second and that was once again aided by Sarr who was brought down in the box. A lot more secure in possession than on Wednesday and worked hard defensively.
James Garner – 8/10
An excellent well rounded afternoon for the Manchester United loanee. Another player who may not have had a moment for the highlight reel but was the engine behind Watford’s triumph. He constantly opened the options for his teammates and offered a wide passing range which was more accurate than not. Defensively he set the tone with his pressing and found himself on top of all the action. He’ll be disappointed that he’s yet to find his shooting boots from long range but his set pieces were an improvement which only added to a productive performance. Somewhat unfortunate the ball deflected off his body for Preston’s goal
Nathaniel Chalobah – 7.5/10
Simply a man possessed in the second half which you have to say has come out of nowhere. A high class finish following a one-two with Deeney gave Watford the cushion they were craving and he never looked back, completely bossing proceedings both in and out of possession. His first half performance was sloppy and can’t just be discarded, a couple of decent interventions but again not impactful on the ball.
Domingos Quina – 7.5/10
It was vital Quina followed up his promising performance against Bristol City and he got off to the perfect start making a run to the back post and firing in from close range to give Watford the lead. The areas he picked up coming in off the left seemed to provide a real platform for attacks but I felt like he was trying to do too much on too many occasions which resulted in him giving the ball away. The neat turns and confidence are exactly what you want to see from Quina and he was a bundle of energy, putting himself about defensively as well.
Andre Gray – 4/10
Lasted just 30 minutes before coming off with an injury. Gray nearly gifted Preston an equaliser having tried a cute flick, it only found it’s way to his opponent in his own box and was lucky his blushes were spared. This was not nearly as disastrous as his efforts on Wednesday but Watford certainly benefited from his departure in the first half.
Troy Deeney – 7.5/10
The Captain completely burst on the scene in the second half. He walloped his penalty down the middle in typical style to make it 2-0 which was created through a nice lay off by Troy to Sarr. His link up play then went up a level and he was central to a whirlwind period of Watford dominance. Missed a sitter as he headed over at the back post as Watford were rampant and should’ve hit the target at the very least. An ineffective and largely uneventful first half made it a real game of two halves for the skipper.
Joao Pedro – 7.5/10
A disallowed goal as the first half came to an end was a blow but Pedro got a deserved goal as he once again found himself all alone from a flick on from a corner. The Brazillian played with exuberance which is fundamental to his game and was a joy to watch at times, toying with the opposition with crafty skill and guile as he linked up with this teammates.
What do you make of these ratings? Let us know in the comments below!
featured image credit Polish News