Lambert Treble Sinks Hornets
Sat 25th Feb - 3:00pm
WATFORD WERE on the end of a Rickie Lambert treble as they went down 3-0 to top of the table Southampton in a disappointing game at Vicarage Road.
Watford made five changes from last weekends trip to Selhurst Park with Tomask Kuszczak, Carl Dickinson, Mark Yeates, Troy Deeney and Marcello Trotta replacing Scott Loach, Lee Hodson, Craig Forsyth, Chris Iwelumo and Joe Garner in the starting line up.
The Hornets started brightly enough but struggled to make an impression on the Saints in a game of few chances for either side.
Southampton took the lead after 13 minutes through Rickie Lambert, although new loan signing Tomask Kuszczak gave him more than a helping hand. Jose Fonte's long ball into the box was completely misjudged by Kuszczak and Lambert nodded the ball into the empty net.
Southampton doubled their lead 8 minutes later through Lambert again. After Nosworthy's clearance was picked up by Morgan Schneiderlin he fed the ball to Adam Lallana who teed up Lambert to strike home from just outside the area.
Watford continued to compete in the middle third but struggled to find the composure or final pass to really hurt the Saints rearguard. Alex Kacaniklic provided the greatest threat for the Hornets but his crosses were well dealt with by the Southampton defence.
Half Time: 0-2
Watford started the second half brightly and almost pulled a goal back after 55 minutes. Good work from Mark Yeates saw him beat two defenders and his cross was headed back across goal by Troy Deeney but Eustace stretching backwards couldn't head in at the back post.
Southampton sealed the points with Lambert's third from the penalty spot after 72 minutes. After Kuczszack had saved at point blank range from Tadanari Lee, the striker was then bundled over by Carl Dickinson and Lambert smashed the penalty past Kuszczak into the top corner.
The Hornets continued to fight to the death and nearly found a consolation when good build up play saw Troy Deeney's cross find substitute Joe Garner but he headed straight at Davis whilst behind manhandled by Jos Hooiveld.
Full Time: 0-3
Watford: Kuszczak, Doyley, Nosworthy, Mariappa, Dickinson, Yeates (Buaben), Eustace, Hogg, Kacaniklic (Iwelumo), Trotta (Garner), Deeney
Southampton: Davis, Butterfield, Hooiveld, Fonte, Fox, Schneiderlin, Cork, Chaplow (Hammond), Lallana (Puncheon), Lambert (Connolly), Lee
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