Zola: 'Should have been two or three ahead'
Head coach Gianfranco Zola was left disappointed yesterday as his side were beaten 2-1 by Middlesbrough, the main talking point though was Matej Vydra's ludicrous red card.
For the second time in a week, Watford played at least 45 minutes with 10 men after the Czech Republic international was dismissed before half-time by referee Steve Rushton.
Rushton, who has sent off eight players now in 11 matches, gestured that the Udinese forward had been dismissed for a stamp on Nicky Bailey, who had made the tackle.
Watford were ahead after just 30 seconds, Vydra latching onto a lax backpass from Andre Amougou, Troy Deeney finishing with 'keeper Jason Steele stranded.
Middlesbrough levelled when Marvin Emnes hooked in acrobatically before Vydra's sending-off.
In the second-half, substitute Scott McDonald won the game for 'Boro with a cool finish, his first strike of the season after a falling-out with Tony Mowbray.
Speaking to watfordfc.com afterwards, Zola did his best to side-step the contentious red for the second time in five days:
'Perhaps the incident is irrelevant if we are two or three goals ahead,' admitted Zola.
'For the first 20 minutes that is as well as I have seen the team play, better than Birmingham even I felt.
'And I am a little disappointed that we took our pedal off the gas a bit. We dropped off the top level we were at and allowed a good team like Middlesbrough to believe they had a way back into the match.
Watford now head into a 14 day international break before taking on Peterborough United at the Vic' on October 20.