Hornets hold off Tigers
By Simon Fudge
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Watford held on to reach the Carling Cup fourth round after a 2-1 win over Hull City.
Watford held on to reach the fourth round of Carling Cup after a 2-1 victory over Championship strugglers Hull City.
A first-half free kick from Ashley Young and a second half strike from Tamas Priskin gave The Hornets success in their third round tie with The Tigers.
Hull battled hard to the end after substitute Nicky Barmby pulled a goal back for, but Watford did enough to move on in the cup competition.
Hornets boss Adrian Boothroyd made one change from the side that drew at Charlton Athletic on Saturday, as Priskin replaced Tommy Smith in attack.
Championship bottom club Hull made four changes, with Tigers boss Phil Parkinson bringing in Andy Dawson, Ryan France, Dean Marney and Jon Parkin for Danny Mills, Danny Coles, Craig Fagan and Nicky Forster.
The first half saw the Premiership side dominate proceedings at Vicarage Road, with The Hornets taking just two minutes to claim the lead.
After Ian Ashbee had brought down Priskin near the edge of Hull's box, England Under-21 international Young stepped up to curl his set-piece over the visitors' wall and past goalkeeper Boaz Myhill for 1-0.
It was an excellent start by the home side, and Danny Shittu nearly doubled Watford's lead, but he failed to connect with Hameur Bouazza's low cross from close range after a short corner from Young.
To their credit, The Tigers came back into the cup tie, with striker Parkin forcing Watford's Jordan Stewart to block his fierce close-range drive before John Welsh squandered a fine goalscoring chance.
Welsh struck his shot high and wide after Parkin laid off a fine ball to him on the edge of the Watford box before Stuart Elliott forced Watford's on-loan goalkeeper Ben Foster into a save with his low shot moments later.
At the other end, Damien Francis should have done better with a far-post header from Young's free kick that he knocked wide of target before Myhill stopped Priskin's close-range shot after latching on to a Young through ball.
The Hull supporters behind Foster's goal then made vocal claims for a penalty after Watford's Lloyd Doyley looked to have pushed Elliott in the home side's box.
The half ended with Priskin forcing Myhill to save his clever back-heel from Stewart's near-post cross from the left, as Boothroyd's side took a deserved lead into the half-time break.
The second half saw Watford take more of a grip on the cup tie with a second goal nine minutes after half time.
Priskin claimed possession in the Hull box before striking a right-footed shot past Myhill to make it 2-0.
The second goal left Watford in command, with Young trying his luck from distance before Darius Henderson headed a glorious far-post chance off target.
Parkinson then brought on former England international Barmby on 69 minutes, as Hull tried to find a way back into the tie.
The veteran justified his introduction two minutes later by striking a close-range overhead kick home to make it 2-1.
The goal spurred The Tigers and they created the best opportunities before the end, with Foster fortunate Parkin did not punish his mis-hit clearance that deflected off team-mate Jay DeMerit, as the Hull striker's chipped effort sailed just wide of the target.
Foster proved a key figure in maintaining the scoreline, saving Parkin's downward header from Mark Yeates's free kick before making a diving stop to deny Ashbee's fierce just before the final whistle.
|Watford||Team Statistics||Hull City|
|1||1st Half Goals||0|
|3||Shots on Target||2|
|5||Shots off Target||1|