Premier League
Watford0Bournemouth0

Watford 0-0 Bournemouth

Troy Deeney
Watford's Troy Deeney (centre) made his 250th appearance for the Hornets

Watford and Bournemouth both missed good chances as their contest at Vicarage Road finished goalless.

Hornets' striker Odion Ighalo had the best of those opportunities when his header from eight yards sailed over the bar.

He also fired over the bar from 12 yards from a quick free-kick, and forced Artur Boruc into an early save.

The Cherries went close through Max Gradel, who made his first appearance since a ligament injury in August.

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Hornets in a mid-table slumber?

Odion Ighalo
Odion Ighalo (24) was unmarked when he had his headed chance from eight yards

And why not?

They have 37 points and might only need about 42 to secure Premier League survival. So with a estimated £100m guaranteed for retaining top-flight status, you cannot blame Quique Sanchez Flores' men for appearing to drop down a gear.

Nevertheless, there is pride at stake, and for Ighalo, the honour of finishing as the division's top scorer. The Nigerian has 14 goals - five goals fewer than Leicester's Jamie Vardy - but has not found the net only once in the league since 28 December.

Had the 26-year-old been at his sharpest he would have scored inside the first minute instead of firing at Boruc. He also headed over inexplicably in the second half and then again missed the target after Ben Watson's quick thinking from a free-kick gave him another good opportunity.

When will his rotten run come to an end?

Cherries could have nicked it

Flores will no doubt think his side should have won the match, but so will counterpart Eddie Howe.

Gradel, who came on for the injured Junior Stanislas in the 21st minute, had a header and looping shot saved by Gomes. The Brazilian keeper then made a fantastic stop to prevent Harry Arter's swerving shot from bursting the net.

One incident that is certain to be discussed was the handball by Watford's Valon Behrami from a corner. Intentional? Referee Anthony Taylor did not think so.

The point moves Bournemouth further away from the bottom three. Aside from good forward play, the defence limited Watford to few clear-cut chances. Repeat all-round displays should see them safe.

Man of the match - Heurelho Gomes (Watford)

Heurelho Gomes
He's unorthodox, but at times very effective - the Brazilian keeper produced good saves at Vicarage Road to deny Bournemouth an away win

Manager reaction

Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe:

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Cherries were not clinical enough - Howe

"We should have won. We were excellent in long spells of the game. But it's a clean sheet and a point.

"Any point gained away from home is a valuable one. However, Gomes did make some wonderful saves today.

"I thought it was a penalty when Behrami handled. The ref had a good game though. The speed of which the ball flies around you, you have sympathy. But from my angle it looked a penalty."

Watford boss Quique Sanchez Flores:

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Flores not worried about lack of Watford goals

"When you don't win it's important to get a point. We are closer to the 40-point mark.

"I don't worry about Ighalo not scoring. He gets chances. All the players do need to contribute but we are creating chances - 0-0 is fair enough.

"Our next match is against Man United. They are strong. We have to go into the match knowing this will be tough."

The stats you need to know

  • Watford had just one shot on target against Bournemouth; only against Southampton (0) in August have they attempted fewer at Vicarage Road this season
  • The Hornets have failed to score in five of their last seven Premier League matches
  • Bournemouth have lost just one of their last eight Premier League away games (W3 D4 L1)
  • Watford recorded just their second clean sheet in 10 Premier League games
  • Keeper Gomes made more passes than any other Watford player versus Bournemouth (37)

What next?

Watford are at Manchester United on Wednesday 2 March, and Bournemouth host south coast rivals Southampton a day earlier.

Line-ups

Watford

  • 1Gomes
  • 14Paredes
  • 15CathcartBooked at 87mins
  • 3Britos
  • 16Aké
  • 8BehramiBooked at 82mins
  • 23WatsonBooked at 77mins
  • 29CapoueSubstituted forSuárezat 57'minutes
  • 11N AmrabatSubstituted forAbdiat 83'minutes
  • 9Deeney
  • 24Ighalo

Substitutes

  • 2Nyom
  • 4Suárez
  • 5Prödl
  • 18Pantilimon
  • 21Anya
  • 22Abdi
  • 25Holebas

Bournemouth

  • 1Boruc
  • 15A Smith
  • 2Francis
  • 3S Cook
  • 11Daniels
  • 30RitchieSubstituted forMurrayat 85'minutes
  • 8Arter
  • 6SurmanBooked at 84mins
  • 19StanislasSubstituted forGradelat 23'minutes
  • 17King
  • 20AfobeSubstituted forGoslingat 74'minutes

Substitutes

  • 4Gosling
  • 5Elphick
  • 10Gradel
  • 12Iturbe
  • 23Federici
  • 25Distin
  • 27Murray
Referee:
Anthony Taylor
Attendance:
20,831

Match Stats

Home TeamWatfordAway TeamBournemouth
Possession
Home47%
Away53%
Shots
Home14
Away11
Shots on Target
Home1
Away3
Corners
Home4
Away5
Fouls
Home14
Away16

Live Text

Match ends, Watford 0, Bournemouth 0.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Watford 0, Bournemouth 0.

Attempt missed. Valon Behrami (Watford) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the right following a set piece situation.

Foul by Glenn Murray (Bournemouth).

Miguel Britos (Watford) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Adam Smith (Bournemouth) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Foul by Almen Abdi (Watford).

Corner, Bournemouth. Conceded by Heurelho Gomes.

Attempt saved. Max Gradel (Bournemouth) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the top centre of the goal.

Booking

Craig Cathcart (Watford) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Max Gradel (Bournemouth) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Foul by Craig Cathcart (Watford).

Substitution

Substitution, Bournemouth. Glenn Murray replaces Matt Ritchie.

Booking

Andrew Surman (Bournemouth) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Foul by Andrew Surman (Bournemouth).

Almen Abdi (Watford) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Attempt blocked. Matt Ritchie (Bournemouth) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Simon Francis.

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

Substitution

Substitution, Watford. Almen Abdi replaces Nordin Amrabat.

Delay in match Matt Ritchie (Bournemouth) because of an injury.

Booking

Valon Behrami (Watford) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Matt Ritchie (Bournemouth) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Valon Behrami (Watford).

Attempt missed. Harry Arter (Bournemouth) left footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the left. Assisted by Dan Gosling.

Attempt saved. Max Gradel (Bournemouth) header from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Joshua King with a cross.

Booking

Ben Watson (Watford) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Max Gradel (Bournemouth) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Ben Watson (Watford).

Attempt missed. Odion Ighalo (Watford) right footed shot from the left side of the box is high and wide to the right. Assisted by Ben Watson following a set piece situation.

Foul by Adam Smith (Bournemouth).

Nordin Amrabat (Watford) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Attempt missed. Miguel Britos (Watford) left footed shot from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the left. Assisted by Ben Watson with a cross following a set piece situation.

Foul by Matt Ritchie (Bournemouth).

Valon Behrami (Watford) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Foul by Matt Ritchie (Bournemouth).

Nathan Aké (Watford) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Substitution

Substitution, Bournemouth. Dan Gosling replaces Benik Afobe.

Foul by Matt Ritchie (Bournemouth).

Troy Deeney (Watford) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Steve Cook (Bournemouth) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Leicester27168349292056
2Tottenham26149347202751
3Arsenal26156541231851
4Man City26145748282047
5West Ham271110641311043
6Man Utd2611873324941
7Southampton2711793526940
8Stoke27116102933-439
9Liverpool2610883836238
10Watford27107102928137
11Chelsea279994037336
12Everton26811746351135
13West Brom2798102734-735
14Crystal Palace2795132935-632
15Bournemouth2778123044-1429
16Swansea2669112434-1027
17Norwich2766153051-2124
18Newcastle2666142749-2224
19Sunderland2765163251-1923
20Aston Villa2737172148-2716
View full Premier League table

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