A resolute defensive display helped Nottingham Forest end a run of three straight defeats as they held promotion-chasing Watford to a 0-0 draw at the City Ground.
Chris Hughton's side looked the more likely to break the deadlock, with Lyle Taylor flicking a header narrowly over and almost setting up Cafu for a debut goal.
Forest ensured Vladimir Ivic's team had only rare sights of goal, as they defended solidly to claim their first clean sheet since they beat Wycombe 2-0 at the start of the month.
It was not until the 17th minute that the game produced a meaningful effort on goal, as Harry Arter's driven shot was sent looping just wide by Cafu, who had stretched to get his head to the ball.
After half pushing away a cross from Domingos Quina, Forest keeper Brice Samba was quick to rush out and close down Joao Pedro as the in-form Watford man looked to drive the loose ball into the back of the net.
This was a scrappy, hard-fought contest, in which both sides were struggling to carve out meaningful openings.
With half an hour gone, neither keeper had been forced into a challenging save. A free-kick wide on the left gave Forest the chance to change that, but Arter's cross-shot was driven into the side netting.
A fine ball from Anthony Knockaert sent Cafu racing into the box down the right and his cross was equally precise - but Joe Lolley's driven effort was deflected wide.
Pedro almost gave the second half an exciting start, when he lashed a shot narrowly wide within the first minute of the restart, having found space on the edge of the box.
A poor piece of control from Christian Kabasele was pounced upon by Lolley in the Watford box but the defender recovered to block the winger's shot. Taylor flicked a header just over the bar as Forest began to find some attacking threat.
Taylor was close to connecting with another cross, from Cyrus Christie. Taylor then almost set up Cafu with a lovely, low ball, which the midfielder was inches away from prodding home in the centre.
Forest were defending well, allowing Watford few opportunities, while prodding and probing for an opportunity of their own at the other end.
Nathaniel Chalobah was very lucky not to be red carded. He had been lucky not to be booked for a late challenge on Ryan Yates, moments before he was shown a yellow for a robust challenge on Cafu.
Forest's players were furious when the midfielder then went unpunished after bringing down Arter with a rugged challenge.
What the managers said...
Nottingham Forest's Chris Hughton: "It was a competitive game against a very good offensive team. I think we had to be very disciplined in what we did. Anyone watching the game, I don't think would see a lack of enthusiasm or work rate. The plusses are that it was a clean sheet against a very good side. Joe Worrall played his first game after injury and Cafu made a positive impact on his debut. There were some real plusses. The only negative is that I felt it was a good enough performance to get more from the game.
"I still think we have to make more chances and more opportunities. But we had some good spells in the game. We got into good areas; into some good crossing positions. Watford are a very good side, you can see why they are where they are in the table."
Watford's Vladimir Ivic: "It does not matter if we play home or away, we know what our goals are this season. It is not that we want to win at home and draw away. No, in every game our goal is the same - to win. We prepare ourselves to take three points in every game. In the last 11 months we have only won once away from home. That is not good for a team that wants to win promotion.
"We need to believe in ourselves. We do not want to speak about excuses. We want to fight and we want to play. This Championship is a long marathon and a lot of teams can beat each other. Teams will beat you if you are not at your top level."