By James Kilpatrick
Woking 0-2 Watford: Will Hughes, Troy Deeney goals end Woking's FA Cup run
Report as Woking's impressive run is halted at the third-round stage
Last Updated: 08/01/19 3:10pm
Woking's FA Cup run came to an end against Watford as goals from Will Hughes and Troy Deeney earned the visitors a 2-0 win over the National League South side.
Watford took the lead in the 13th minute through Hughes during a first half in which the Hornets dominated possession.
The second half contained few goalscoring chances for either team, but Watford substitute Deeney wrapped up a comfortable victory for the Premier League side with a simple tap-in (75).
Woking fought hard in front of a sell-out crowd at Laithwaite Community Stadium , with assistant manager - and Sky Sports commentator - Martin Tyler watching on from the touchline, but it is Javi Gracia's men who will be in the pot for the fourth-round draw on Monday night.
Woking: Ross (6), Collier (6), Casey (7), Cook (6), Gerring (7), Jolley (6), Edser (6), Taylor (6), Hyde (6), Luer (6), Loza (6)
Subs: Little (7), Hodges (6), Bradbury (6)
Watford: Gomes (6), Janmaat (6), Britos (6), Wilmot (6), Masina (6), Cleverley (6), Chalobah (6), Quina (6), Hughes (7), Success (5), Penaranda (6)
Subs: Sema (6), Deeney (7), Navarro (5)
Man of the match: Will Hughes
Watford dominated the opening stages with lively debutant Adalberto Penaranda firing an early warning shot narrowly wide just six minutes in. The visitors went close again six minutes later when Adam Masina's point-blank effort hit Toby Edser in the face on the goal-line, and they broke the deadlock moments later.
The resulting corner was drilled low into the area by Masina, finding the unmarked Hughes who curled his first-time effort into the side of the net.
Woking struggled to find a way into the game with Watford bossing possession, and the Premier League side nearly doubled their lead through Tom Cleverley before half-time, but his 36th-minute free-kick crashed off the crossbar.
Javi Gracia changed his entire line-up to the one that drew 3-3 with Bournemouth on Wednesday evening.
Woking were without their leading goalscorer Max Kretzschmar who has a hamstring injury.
The second half was relatively uneventful, but Woking continued to fight with substitute Armani Little having a shot on target from 25-yards out on the hour mark, which required Huerelho Gomes to make a save.
Ken Sema and Deeney were introduced in the 71st minute and the two combined for Watford's second three minutes after coming on. Sema's pegged-back pass from the left flank was met by Deeney at the near post and he flicked home.
Woking's best chance of the game fell to former Watford youngster Harvey Bradbury four minutes from time, but the substitute directed his header from a few yards out over the bar, ensuring Watford held on for a clean sheet.
Watford midfielder Will Hughes scored his first goal in the FA Cup since January 2015 for Derby County against Chesterfield; he has now been involved in a goal in each of his last three appearances in the competition (two goals, one assist).
Troy Deeney has scored three goals in his last two matches for Watford in all competitions, as many as his previous 26 combined prior to this.
Man of the Match - Will Hughes
It was a comfortable afternoon for Watford's attack and that was mostly due to the contribution of Hughes, who was tidy in possession and was clever with his movement as he scored their crucial opener to dampen Woking's spirits.