Championship
WatfordWatford2ReadingReading0

Watford 2-0 Reading: Ismaila Sarr double gives promotion chasers victory

Ismaila Sarr scores his first goal
Ismaila Sarr scored twice in two minutes for Watford

Two goals from Ismaila Sarr saw second-placed Watford take another step towards promotion back to the Premier League with a win over Reading at Vicarage Road.

The Senegalese gave the hosts the lead with a curled effort after cutting in from the right and just under two minutes later made it 2-0 with a fiercely struck shot that gave visiting goalkeeper Rafael Cabral no chance.

The visitors should have pulled one back when George Puscas hit the post from close range with the goal open.

Watford are now 12 points clear of third-placed Brentford, having played two games more, and five behind Championship leaders Norwich.

Sixth-placed Reading will drop out of the play-off places on Saturday if Bournemouth beat Coventry at home.

The game was as good as decided in the space of a couple of minutes as Sarr showed his class with two fantastic goals.

First he latched on to a through ball from Kiko Femenia and stepped in on to his left foot to curl home and then he powerfully shot into the top far corner after Reading had been caught in possession on the halfway line.

Puscas hit the post from inside the six-yard box and Yakou Meite sliced an effort into the side-netting as Veljko Paunovic's men looked for a way back into the game before the break.

The Hornets were rarely troubled in the second half and are now unbeaten in eight games, with seven wins in that time.

They visit rivals Luton next Saturday, while Reading are back in action next Friday with a home game against play-off hopefuls Cardiff.

Watford boss Xisco Munoz:

"If it was up to me we would play all our games at home.

"It is very nice when you have big power in your home. There is only one problem - it would be far more emotional if we could play with our fans but this is the life we have now.

"I am very happy with Sarr, he put in a very good performance. But I want to say that for all the players."

Reading boss Veljko Paunovic:

(On George Puscas' miss) "He was in the same spot against Derby on Monday and he scored.

"This group is one of the best groups I have worked with. If somebody misses that's football, nobody is there to blame. It's the opposite and I will just keep encouraging the work of the team."

"The tough part of the game is the result. We played great football against one of the best teams in the league but the outcome was not what we wanted.

Line-ups

Watford

Formation 4-3-3

  • 26Bachmann
  • 21Femenía
  • 5Troost-EkongSubstituted forCathcartat 70'minutes
  • 31Sierralta
  • 11Masina
  • 14ChalobahSubstituted forC Sánchezat 45'minutes
  • 19HughesBooked at 75mins
  • 7ZinckernagelBooked at 17mins
  • 23Sarr
  • 10João PedroSubstituted forGrayat 78'minutes
  • 12SemaSubstituted forSuccessat 78'minutesBooked at 90mins

Substitutes

  • 1Foster
  • 3Ngakia
  • 15Cathcart
  • 16Gosling
  • 17Lazaar
  • 18Gray
  • 22Success
  • 28C Sánchez
  • 44Hungbo

Reading

Formation 4-2-3-1

  • 33Cabral Barbosa
  • 17Yiadom
  • 29Holmes
  • 6Moore
  • 15GibsonSubstituted forRichardsat 64'minutes
  • 8RinomhotaBooked at 56minsSubstituted forBaldockat 87'minutes
  • 28Laurent
  • 11Meite
  • 7Olise
  • 14EjariaSubstituted forAlukoat 87'minutes
  • 47PuscasSubstituted forLucas Joãoat 64'minutes

Substitutes

  • 2Pontes Esteves
  • 3Richards
  • 9Baldock
  • 18Lucas João
  • 22Southwood
  • 24Aluko
  • 30Semedo
  • 34Tetek
  • 48Dorsett
Referee:
James Linington

Match Stats

Home TeamWatfordAway TeamReading
Possession
Home47%
Away53%
Shots
Home12
Away17
Shots on Target
Home2
Away5
Corners
Home3
Away3
Fouls
Home23
Away14

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, Watford 2, Reading 0.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, Watford 2, Reading 0.

  3. Post update

    Foul by Andy Yiadom (Reading).

  4. Post update

    Isaac Success (Watford) wins a free kick on the left wing.

  5. Post update

    Attempt missed. Yakou Meite (Reading) left footed shot from the left side of the six yard box misses to the left. Assisted by Sam Baldock.

  6. Post update

    Foul by Liam Moore (Reading).

  7. Post update

    Ismaila Sarr (Watford) wins a free kick on the left wing.

  8. Post update

    Corner, Reading. Conceded by Carlos Sánchez.

  9. Booking

    Isaac Success (Watford) is shown the yellow card.

  10. Post update

    Thomas Holmes (Reading) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  11. Post update

    Foul by Philip Zinckernagel (Watford).

  12. Post update

    Attempt saved. Sone Aluko (Reading) left footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Lucas João.

  13. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Liam Moore (Reading) left footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked.

  14. Substitution

    Substitution, Reading. Sone Aluko replaces Ovie Ejaria.

  15. Substitution

    Substitution, Reading. Sam Baldock replaces Andy Rinomhota.

  16. Post update

    Corner, Watford. Conceded by Liam Moore.

  17. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Ismaila Sarr (Watford) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked.

  18. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Francisco Sierralta (Watford) header from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Philip Zinckernagel with a cross.

  19. Post update

    Corner, Watford. Conceded by Thomas Holmes.

  20. Post update

    Attempt missed. Omar Richards (Reading) left footed shot from outside the box is too high following a set piece situation.

Scores, Results & Fixtures

Friday 9th April 2021

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Norwich40269564283687
2Watford412410759273282
3Brentford391913766402670
4Swansea392091045311469
5Barnsley40208125244868
6Reading411991356451166
7Bournemouth3918111060382265
8Cardiff4016101455431258
9Millwall401416104137458
10Middlesbrough40169154843557
11Stoke401413134544155
12QPR391411144346-353
13Luton39148173245-1350
14Bristol City40154214055-1549
15Nottm Forest401212163439-548
16Preston40146204150-948
17Blackburn401210185045546
18Derby401110193045-1543
19Huddersfield391110184260-1843
20Coventry391012173552-1742
21Birmingham401012182950-2142
22Rotherham36105213851-1335
23Sheff Wed39118203348-1535
24Wycombe4089232961-3233
View full Championship table

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