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    Watford 1-1 Everton: Honours even at Vicarage Road

    By Alex Easley
    Jose Holebas celebrates Watford's equalizer in the 1-1 draw with Everton.
    Watford and Everton both ended their poor runs of form in the Premier League with a 1-1 draw at Vicarage Road on Saturday afternoon.

    Both the goals came in first-half injury time, with James McCarthy opening the scoring for the away side after an awful error from Hornets defender Miguel Britos.

    The hosts equalized just moments later through Jose Holebas, whose header ended a run of four straight league losses as both sides moved closer to the infamous 40-point mark.

    Watford boss Quique Sanchez Flores had made five changes from the team that lost 4-0 at Arsenal last weekend, with Swiss international Valon Behrami returning from a recent illness.

    Everton, on the other hand, made just a single change from their 1-0 defeat to Manchester United, with Gareth Barry back after a two game suspension.

    Both teams took a while to get into their stride, with the first effort of the game coming just past the quarter-hour mark when Jurado’s well-struck drive from the edge of the box was saved superbly by Joel Robles in the Everton goal.

    The Merseysiders also had their own threatening moments in a quiet first period, as Gerard Deulofeu forced a good stop by Heurelho Gomes at the other end.

    The game really burst into life in the four added minutes at the end of the first half when Etienne Capoue came close to opening the scoring with an effort from the right-hand edge of the area that was deflected past the post.

    The Toffees broke up the pitch from the resulting Watford corner, but when Britos won the ball back for the Hornets only to be robbed by McCarthy on the edge of his own box.

    The Irishman was free to race through on goal and coolly slotted the ball past Gomes and give his side the lead.

    However, there was still enough time at the end of the half for a late Watford corner, from which Holebas rose at the far post to head in the equaliser from Ben Watson’s cross.
    Everton fans brought a banner saying 'Martinez Out' to the game.
    Everton stepped up the pace after the break as they looked to halt a run of three straight league defeats, a sequence that saw their fans hold up banners calling for boss Roberto Martinez to quit, but they were unable to find a way past Gomes.

    The experienced Brazilian shot-stopper produced impressive stops to twice keep out Aaron Lennon and then Romelu Lukaku, whose recent mini goal draught continued.

    With time running out, though, both teams came close to stealing all three points as first Lukaku had a close-range shot deflected on to the bar after Gomes had pushed aside a Kevin Mirallas free-kick.

    And then in injury time, Watson's deflected drive was acrobatically pushed behind by Robles.


    Watford: Gomes, Paredes, Cathcart, Britos, Holebas, Behrami, Capoue, Watson, Jurado, Deeney, Ighalo

    Subs used: Mario Suarez, Amrabat, Guedioura

    Everton: Robles, Coleman, Stones, Jagielka, Baines, McCarthy, Barry, Lennon, Barkley, Deulofeu, Lukaku

    Subs used: Mirallas, Cleverley, Funes Mori

    MAN OF THE MATCH: Heurelho Gomes
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    Item Reviewed: Watford 1-1 Everton: Honours even at Vicarage Road Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Alex Easley
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