FOOTBALL: Taylor's side given no chance as Everton cash in

Watford 1 Everton 3
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The Independent Online
NO CHANCE, no chance and no chance. Three goals and Alec Chamberlain had no chance of stopping any of them.

It is not going well for the Premiership club with the Broadway aspirations and the cul-de-sac address. Saturday's almost inevitable home defeat by Everton was the 13th match without a win for Watford, who last left the field savouring the taste of victory on 18 September, when Chelsea were caught on an off day.

Graham Taylor missed Saturday's match with a virus but will be fit for the crucial trio of games during Christmas and New Year when Watford play three times in nine days against Tottenham (Boxing Day), Southampton (28 December) and Derby (3 January).

"It is a bad run," admitted Chamberlain. "We need a win to get the confidence back because when a run like this comes along it is even more difficult to recover from going one or two behind. Today we had a lot of chances and we missed good opportunities. We never stopped trying but their penalty killed us off."

The match was dominated by the three class acts that excelled in front of Chamberlain's often besieged goal - Kevin Campbell, Nicky Barmby and Don Hutchison. Barmby scored the first from Hutchison's work after four minutes and after 40 minutes Barmby swept the ball wide to Campbell, who delivered a precise cross for Hutchison to score. They combined again in the second half but just failed to beat Chamberlain who produced a contender for save of the season from one Campbell effort.

Watford scored at a time when it looked like their Republic of Congo international, Michel Ngonge, had decided that winter in the Home Counties, with the physical attention of several of the opposition, was not his idea of fun. His head had dropped and it looked like he was ready to quit when he set off after the ball, and avoided two challengers before striking cleanly for the back of the net on 60 minutes.

With the deficit halved Watford found themselves back in the game. A few minutes later, Walter Smith moved from his dug-out to release Dave Watson on the Watford hopefuls. Watson, known on Merseyside as the White Pele, was influential from the start and managed to slow the pace of the game to Everton's advantage.

With less than four minutes left Barmby earned a penalty for Everton when he was shoved off the ball. David Unsworth made amends for his poor attempt at stopping Ngonge scoring by beating Chamberlain and securing Everton their first win in nine games. To add to Taylor's woes, Neil Cox was dismissed in extra-time for dissent and will serve a three-match suspension.

Goals: Barmby (4) 0-1; Hutchison (37) 0-2; Ngonge (60) 1-2; Unsworth (pen 86) 1-3.

Watford: Chamberlain; Cox, Palmer, Page, Robinson; Hyde (Foley, 88), Williams, Johnson, Miller; Smith, Ngonge. Substitutes not used: Day (gk), Gibbs, Bakalli, Perpetuini.

Everton: Gerrard; Unsworth, Weir, Dunne, Cleland (Watson, 69); Pembridge, Collins, Abel Xavier, Barmby; Campbell, Hutchison. Substitutes not used: Ball, Moore, Grant, Simonsen (gk).

Referee: A Wilkie (Chester-le-Street).

Booking: Everton: Gerrard.

Man of the match: Barmby.

Attendance: 17,346.

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