Having lost two league games all season prior to last Saturday Watford have now lost their last two matches and cracks are beginning to appear in Aidy Boothroyd's side. While there was not so much disgrace in losing to a late unlucky goal against Barnsley at the weekend, here at Vicarage Road the Hornets were soundly outplayed all bar a 15-minute spell at the start of the second half.
It was all the more galling that it should be at that moment that Burnley scored their first goal and ten minutes from time Joey Gudjonsson scored the visitors' decisive second.
Boothroyd is always the first to defend his team when things are going badly but he could not find anything to redeem this performance. He said: "Today was worse than Saturday. We were lacklustre, substandard, awful and shocking. This is so unlike this group of players. This was less than average and Burnley deserved their win."
By contrast to Boothroyd who has been in charge for well over two years this was Owen Coyle's second game at the helm and the Scot must think that managing south of the border is easy. The former St Johnstone manager drew with Stoke in his first game at the weekend and has now beaten the Championship leaders on their home turf.
Coyle said: "I sensed the quality here in training and I felt we merited all three points. Although this was far from easy we stood up to the pressure."
Only the post after Chris McCann's header, a Mart Poom save and the non-awarding of a blatant penalty when Robbie Blake was fouled stopped Burnley scoring early on.
The visitors had their reward after 59 minutes when Wade Elliott crossed from the right and Andy Gray directed his header inside Poom's post. With ten minutes remaining Gudjonsson ran 50 yards and around Poom for Burnley's second. Danny Shittu's goal four minutes from time did nothing to lighten Boothroyd's mood.
Watford (4-4-2): Poom; Doyley, Shittu, Demerit, Stewart; Smith, G Mahon, Williamson, Kabba; King, Henderson. Substitutes not used: Lee (gk), Jackson, Francis, Ellington, Priskin.
Burnley (4-3-3): Kiraly; Alexander, Carlisle, Unsworth, Harley; Elliott, McCann, A Mahon; Gray, Blake, Lafferty. Substitutes not used: Jensen (gk), O'Connor, Gudjonsson, Akinbiyi, Jones.
Referee: K Friend (Leicestershire).Reuse content