Watford continued their revival under Nigel Pearson with an impressive 3-0 win at Bournemouth took them out of the relegation zone and piled more misery on Eddie Howe.
Abdoulaye Doucoure, Troy Deeney and Roberto Pereyra gave the Hornets a deserved second away win of the season and saw them move out of the bottom three for the very first time this season.
It’s been an incredible rise for a team that looked dead and buried when they sacked their second manager of the season, but Pearson has given them hope, direction and more importantly points with this success their fourth win in five to take their tally to 13 points from the last possible 15.
Watford had everything a team down the bottom needs to suggest they’ll survive, with every player running their hearts out, winning most of their individual battles and having a definitely plan to work to – everything in fact that Bournemouth lacked as their terrible run continued.
From the moment debutant keeper Mark Travis’ mistake led to Doucoure’s opener, the confidence drained out of a team that has just one win in 11, with nine defeats, and just one point gained from a losing position all season.
Keeper error leads to opener
Young goalkeeper Travis was starting as Bournemouth's injury problems continue to hurt them, and after an even first half his poor clearance led to the Watford opener three minutes before the break.
Bournemouth were guilty of trying to play their way out from the back when it was perhaps better, considering who was playing, to clear the danger, and it lead to them going in behind.
Given their record in recovering losing positions, the hosts never seemed likely to respond and it was mainly Watford in the second half, playing with the confidence they've now found with the appointment of Pearson and the return from injury of Deeney.
The skipper led by example yet again and sealed the points with a thumping 65th minute finish in a moment the summed up the difference in the sides as he showed more hunger and desire to get to a bouncing ball ahead of three defenders to lash it home.
Pereyra's acrobatic third in stoppage time provided the correct margin of victory between the two sides as Bournemouth were condemned to remaining in the relegation zone - somewhere they'd not been since 2017.
The lack of fit players, fight, confidence, and goals will be of huge concern to Howe as his name now tops the list of managers in danger of losing their Premier League jobs next.
Bournemouth 0-3 Watford Opta stats
- Watford boss Nigel Pearson (P15 W11 D2 L2) is the first English manager to win at least 11 Premier League matches across a 15-game spell in the competition since Harry Redknapp in January 2012 (also 11).
- Bournemouth have now lost 81 Premier League games since their first campaign in the competition in 2015-16 – only today’s victors Watford (82) have suffered more in this time. The Cherries have also conceded the most goals in the competition since their first game back in August 2015 (300).
- Watford (P5 W4 D1 L0) have now picked up 13 points from the last 15 available in the Premier League, as many as they won across their previous 22 matches in the competition (13 out of a possible 66).
- Watford have now scored the opening goal in their last five Premier League games, having done so in just four of their previous 17 matches in the competition this season – indeed, only Liverpool (last 10) are on a longer current such run than the Hornets.
- Bournemouth had their first and only shot on target against Watford in the ninth minute; indeed, it is the third time in their last seven Premier League games the Cherries haven’t managed more than one shot on target in a match (0 v Liverpool and Burnley in December).
- Watford’s Troy Deeney has scored eight league goals against Bournemouth in 14 appearances against the Cherries – more goals than he has versus any other opponent during his English league career.
- Abdoulaye Doucouré has scored in back-to-back Premier League games for the first time since April 2019; indeed, the Frenchman has now scored 16 goals in the competition for Watford - only Troy Deeney (41) has more for the Hornets.
- Ismaïla Sarr has had a direct hand in four goals in six Premier League games for Watford under Nigel Pearson (2 goals, 2 assist) – the Senegalese international had previously only scored once and delivered no assists in nine matches under Flores, Mullins and Gracia.
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