It was a game influenced at both the beginning and the death as a 90th minute Watford goal cancelled out Southampton’s record-timing strike.
It was an uphill battle from the get-go for Watford at Vicarage Road on Tuesday, April 23, as a Shane Long goal came just seven seconds after kick-off.
The Hornets passed the ball back to Craig Cathcart from kick-off, and Long quickly blocked him before latching onto the ball and slotting home.
Watford looked to make up for their mistake early on, with in-form winger Deulofeu sending a curling effort just wide in the 12th minute.
It was all Watford for much of the first half, although they did fall asleep at times while Southampton looked to break through Nathan Redmond.
Watford started the second half looking lively, as brilliant attacking play saw Feminia clip a cross in from wide that was begging to be met with a belting header – but Doucoure got the timing of his jump wrong as he sprinted in to take it on and nodded it straight at Gunn.
Further frustration followed for the majority of the half as both sides were eager to push forward, but both struggled to show quality and composure in the final third – but the Hornets continued committing bodies forward, hoping their reward would follow.
A lesser team may have given up as the game came to a close, but Watford showed their mettle and took advantage of a slice of luck in the 90th minute. A cross from the far right fell kindly for Gray, who showed no hesitation in smashing the ball past Gunn and into the top corner from five yards. The Saints ‘keeper got a slight touch, but it wasn’t enough to keep the strike out.
It wasn’t the result Watford were looking for going into the game, but the savoured point pulls Gracia’s men into their desired seventh place, with Everton a point behind.
The Hornets face their FA Cup foes Wolves in their next Premier League match on Saturday, April 27.
Picture courtesy of Watford FC