Burnley 1-3 Watford: Troy Deeney and Andre Gray on target in away win
Highlights and report as Andre Gray, Troy Deeney and Will Hughes find the net
By Charlotte Marsh
Last Updated: 19/08/18 10:01pm
Watford put in another impressive performance as they won their second Premier League game of the season with a 3-1 victory at Burnley on Sunday.
All the goals came at the start of each half, with Andre Gray netting inside three minutes before James Tarkowski's header levelled things up three minutes later.
Burnley saw the better of the first half, but were outdone by two quickfire goals at the beginning of the second period as Troy Deeney (48) slotted home past Joe Hart after a wonderful pass from Abdoulaye Doucoure.
A great solo strike from Will Hughes rounded off the victory two minutes later and despite plenty of Burnley possession, Watford stayed firm at the back to take maximum points from their opening two league games.
Burnley: Hart (6), Lowton (6), Ward (7), Tarkowski (7), Mee (7), Gudmundsson (7), Westwood (6), Cork (6), Lennon (7), Hendrick (6), Wood (5).
Subs used: Barnes (5), Vokes (5), Taylor (5).
Watford: Foster (7), Janmaat (6), Cathcart (7), Kabasele (6), Holebas (7), Doucoure (8), Capoue (7), Hughes (7), Pereyra (7), Deeney (7), Gray (7).
Subs used: Sema (6), Femenia (n/a), Success (n/a).
Man of the match: Abdoulaye Doucoure.
It was a fast start at Turf Moor, and Gray netted against his former side in the third minute after setting off the move. He picked out Deeney on the right before making a lung-busting run into the box, received the ball back from his captain, with his first touch sending the ball fizzing past Joe Hart.
Three minutes later and Burnley were level. Johann Berg Gudmundsson delivered a corner for Tarkowski to head the ball into the back of the net, scoring his first goal for the Clarets in the process.
Burnley made no changes from their draw with Southampton last weekend, and five players kept their places from the midweek win against Istanbul Basaksehir. Watford named an unchanged XI and bench.
There were few other chances for the remainder of the half, with Gundmundsson testing Ben Foster with a superb free kick in the 17th minute, but the Watford goalkeeper was equal to it. Hart also denied Deeney with six minutes of the half to play as the striker tried his luck from distance.
Three was the magic number for Watford as, three minutes into the second half, Deeney doubled the Hornets' lead. After Ben Mee blocked his initial effort, the rebound landed to Doucoure who took out most of the Burnley defence with a superb slotted pass to Deeney on the right and he poked home around Hart.
Two minutes later, and Hughes added the third with a wonderful strike. He latched onto a wayward pass from Matt Lowton before striding towards the top of the area before hammering the ball past a leaping Hart, who could have done little to keep it out.
Although Burnley saw the better of the ball for the remainder of the half, they rarely looked like troubling the Watford defence. The closest they came to a goal was in the 70th minute as Gudmundsson delivered a free kick into the area which was nearly headed home by substitute Sam Vokes, but it whistled past the post.
Notes for Southgate
Joe Hart conceded his first league goals in Burnley colours - although there was little he could do about the third - and did have a couple of nervy moments. James Tarkowski was generally solid at the back, and capped things off with a goal while Jack Cork had a fairly quiet afternoon in midfield. For Watford, Hughes scored a wonderful solo goal and put in a good performance, particularly in the second half.
- Watford have won their opening two matches in a top-flight league season for only the second time. On the previous occasion (1982-83), they ended 2nd in the league behind Liverpool.
- Burnley are now winless in seven successive Premier League matches (W0 D3 L4) and have an aggregate score of 4-13 in these games.
- Since their first season back in the Premier League after re-promotion in 2016-17, this is only the second time that Burnley have conceded 3+ goals in a home match (alongside 0-3 v Tottenham Hotspur in December 2017).
- Andre Gray's opening goal ended a run of 730 minutes without a Premier League away goal for Watford. Indeed, Gray was the last Hornets' player to score on the road in the competition before today; at Manchester City on January 2nd 2018.
Sean Dyche: "We gave them two out of the three, for sure. Will Hughes scored a great goal but he shouldn't have been on the pitch. I saw the tackle, I'm right on top of it and I don't think he's even on the pitch when he makes the tackle, it's that far off the pitch on Stephen Ward, but the referee made a decision and decided not to send him off.
"We were certainly part of our own downfall today. We didn't start the first three or four minutes of the game right. The rest of the first half, I thought we were very good and the first five or six minutes of the second half, we started a bit soft."
Javi Gracia: "It was a challenge for us to improve on previous away games. We got a good result today, we played well and we continued with the same play as we have before.
"I'm happy with the first half too but the second half, we were given a step forward and controlled the game until the last moments. We created many chances, had many shots on target - more than Burnley - and I'm happy for that."
Would VAR have made a difference?
There were a couple of instances where VAR could have been called upon. In the 29th minute, there was a scramble in the area as Jeff Hendrick appeared to go down under pressure from Craig Cathcart but no penalty was given.
There was also a crunching tackle from Hughes on Stephen Ward in front of the dugouts and although he was given a yellow card, replays may have put it as a red card offence.
Also in the 90th minute, there was a confrontation between Matt Lowton and Isaac Success with the Burnley man appearing to stand on Success' hand as he walked past. There could yet be retrospective action from the FA with referee Paul Tierney not showing any cards.
Man of the match - Abdoulaye Doucoure
The midfielder had a wonderful game at Turf Moor and was the heart of Watford's engine room. He martialled things well as Burnley scrapped to find a goal in the second half and his pass for Deeney's goal was nothing short of world class. If he can maintain that level of performance for the entire season, things are looking bright for Watford.
It's another Europa League game for Burnley on Thursday as they travel to Olympiakos in the first leg of their play-off tie to qualify for the group stages. They then face Fulham next Sunday in the Premier League.
For Watford, they also play on Sunday 26 August - live on Sky Sports - as they welcome Crystal Palace to Vicarage Road.