Javi Gracia’s first home Premier League game in charge of Watford ended in a 4-1 victory over 10-man Chelsea, as pressure mounts on his opposite number.
Antonio Conte suffered back-to-back three-goal defeats after a humbling defeat to Bournemouth last time out, and it remains to be seen whether he will remain in charge for the remainder of what has been a disappointing title defence.
Sky Bet make him 1/4 to be the next Premier League manager to leave – that’s from 2/1 prior to the match – with former Barcelona boss Luis Enrique among the favourites to take over.
“Very bad from the start,” said Conte when asked to rate his team’s performance. “It’s a difficult moment. I tried to warn everyone. Maybe I made mistakes, my choices (were) very poor. I’m talking about the starting eleven.”
The visitors indeed started slowly at Vicarage Road and were in trouble from the moment Tiemoue Bakayoko received his marching orders for a second yellow on 30 minutes.
Shortly before half-time, Watford were awarded a penalty when Gerard Deulofeu was brought down by Thibaut Courtois and Troy Deeney made no mistake to send them in with both a goal and a man advantage.
Chelsea seldom looked threatening in the second half, but a moment of brilliance from Hazard had them level as the Belgian curled a 20-yard strike into the corner on 82 minutes.
Watford’s response was to swarm forward and they were immediately rewarded when Daryl Janmaat exchanged passes with substitute Roberto Pereyra before coolly finishing past Courtois.
Four minutes later, Deulofeu danced into the Chelsea box to add a deflected third and in the first of six added minutes, Pereyra lashed home a fourth, landing a 500/1 touch for a handful of punters who backed a 4-1 home win in-play.
Watford had been 200/1 to win 4-1 prior to the match with Sky Bet, whose largest winning ‘RequestABets’ on the night were both 80/1 chances.
Watford to win, over 2.5 goals, 6+ Watford corners and 30+ Chelsea booking points did the trick for some, while Hazard to score, Watford to win and 30+ Chelsea booking points was also a winner.
- Chelsea have now lost more league games this season (6) than they did in the entire 2016-17 campaign (5).
- The Blues have lost consecutive Premier League games by a 3+ goal margin for the first time since October 1995 (1-4 vs Man Utd, 0-3 vs Blackburn).
- Watford earned their first win in any competition against Chelsea in 14 attempts (D3 L10), since a 1-0 win in September 1999.
- Javi Gracia is the first Watford manager to win his first ever home Premier League game in charge of the club.
- Eden Hazard scored his first Premier League goal against Watford; Huddersfield are now the only current side he’s faced but not scored against in the competition.
- All three of Troy Deeney’s Premier League goals this season have been penalties against ‘big six’ sides (Arsenal, Manchester United and Chelsea).
- Three players have now received red cards for fouls on Richarlison this season (Davinson Sanchez, Jonathan Hogg and Tiemoue Bakayoko), more than any other player in the division.
- Chelsea have been shown seven red cards in all competitions this season, two more than any other Premier League side (Watford 5).
- Roberto Pereyra is the fourth player to both score and assist a Premier League goal from the bench this season, after Alvaro Morata vs Burnley, Anthony Martial vs West Ham and Andre Ayew vs Huddersfield.