Watford 3 - 4 Charlton Match Report.
Watford were beaten for the first time in nearly a month at Vicarage Road by a battling Charlton side in a 7 goal thriller. Watford missed Fitz Hall in defence and some of their defending for the goals was poor at time. Gianfranco Zola was not pleased with the end result and thought that the hornets were 'Sloppy' at times with Charlton winning the midfield battle. Zola made 5 changes to the side that beat Brighton 3-1. One was enforced but their other four were rests for crucial players. Fitz Hall was out through injury meaning that Neuton took his place in the side. Jonathan Hogg, Troy Deeney and Matej Vydra were all rested whilst Marco Cassetti returned from suspension to take the place of Ikechi Anya. Replacing Hogg, Deeney and Vydra was Sean Murray (For His First start since Spetember), Alex Geijo and Fernando Forestieri. The game saw a welcome return for Nyron Nosworthy who was on the bench. The game started slowly but on the 11th minute, Watford took the lead. Alex Geijo's curling effort was parried by Charlton keeper Ben Hamer but only as far as Daniel Pudil who took a touch before lashing the ball into the bottom corner of the net. This was the Czech defenders first goal for the Hornets since joining on loan from Granada in the summer transfer window. Five minutes later and Captain Manuel Almunia was called into action when he blocked Ricardo Fullers effort. In the 32nd minute, Charlton's Johnnie Jackson thought he had equalised when he tucked the ball into the top corner when inside the penalty area. But the goal was ruled out for handball by the linesman for handball and Charlton's skipper was booked by referee Trevor Kettle. But in a frantic 5 minute spell, the hornets found themselves behind. Firstly in the 34th minute, a corner was swung in by the Rous Stand and the ball hit Tommie Hoban's legs and the ball bounced in to the net for an own goal. More importantly, the scores were even. Then 2 minutes after the restart, Cedric Evina powered his way past Cassetti and Murray down the wing before passing the ball to Pritchard who crossed the ball to the back post. The ball was met by Yann Kermogant who scored to make it 2-1 to Charlton. The second goal was poor defending from the hornets who are normally bettert than that. The Hornets seemed to be dazed and were nearly 3-1 behind before the break when Ricardo Fullers shot hit the side netting by the goal.
Half Time - 1-2
Watford came out fighting in the second half and were much brighter. Charlton keeper Ben Hamer made a good save from Forestieri after some good play between the Argentive and Alex Geijo. Then in the 52nd minute Watford were awarded a penalty. Fernando Forestieri was running towards the Chalton goal and was tripped by Doran Dervite. Referee Trevor Kettle pointed straight to the spot. Up stepped Swiss midfielder Almen Abdi who calmly dispatched the ball into the corner giving Hamer no chance. This made the score 2-2 and was Abdi's sixth of the season. Charlton went straight down the other end and nearly made it 3-2 when Manuel Almunia denied Jackson. Hamer made a superb save from Geijo in the 57th minute when he tipped over the strikers shot. Almen Abdi was replaced in the 61st minute by Mark Yeates. Geijo performance deserved a goal and he didnt have long to wait to get it. In the 68th Minute, Forestieri played a sublime ball in to the tall Swiss Striker who calmly rolled the ball in to the bottom corner to make it 3-2 to the hornets. This was Geijo second goal of the season and first at Vicarage Road. But Charlton went straight down the other end and equalised in the 70th minute. Ricardo Fuller easily got passed two of Watford's defenders and then rolled the ball back to Kermogant who rolled the ball passed Almunia to make it 3-3. The Hornets should not be pleased by their defending for that goal. Then Charlton went in front in the 78th minute. The ball was floated in from a corner and the ball was met by Charlton Captain Johnnie Jackson who powered a header into the top corner giving Almunia no chance and to male it 4-3 to Charlton. Strikers Matej Vydra and Troy Deeney then came on for Daniel Pudil and Sean Murray in the 78th and 82nd minute for the hornets. Watford nearly eqaulised in the last few minutes when Forestieri's deflected effort was just tipped over by Hamer. But that was that and the match ended 4-3. The Hornets will have to improve their Defending if they want to have any chance of beating Manchester City in the FA Cup. The Hornets still remain Sixth in the table.
Full Time - 3-4
Watford - Almunia (GK)(C), Ekstrand, Hoban, Neuton, Cassetti, Murray (Deeney 82), Chalobah, Abdi (Yeates 61), Pudil (Vydra 78), Forestieri, Geijo.
Subs Not Used - Bond (GK), Anya, Nosworthy, Battochio.
Goals - Pudil (11), Abdi (53 Pen), Geijo (68)
Bookings - Forestieri, Neuton, Ekstrand
Charlton - Hamer (GK), Solly, Dervite, Cort (Taylor 86), Evina, Wilson (Cook 79) , Pritchard, Stephens, Jackson, Kermogant, Fuller (Hulse 90).
Subs Not Used - Button (GK), Wright Phillips, Kerkar, Seabourne.
Goals - Hoban (34 OG), Kermogant (37 +70) Jackson (78)
Bookings - Jackson, Wilson, Cook
Possesion - 50% W - 50% C
Attendance - 14,221 (1,520 Charlton)
Referee - Trevor Kettle.