Emre Can’s stunning overhead kick proved the difference as Watford went down to a narrow 1-0 defeat against Liverpool on Monday night.

The Hornets kept their opponents at bay for much of the match, but could do little to prevent Can’s winner, which arrived in first half stoppage time, as they lost at home for the first time in four outings.

A performance lacking in attacking intent almost yielded a point for Walter Mazzarri’s side when Sebastian Prodl smashed a volley against the bar at the death.

It wasn’t to be for Watford, however, as they suffered their second defeat on the spin to remain 13th in the table, eight points clear of the relegation zone.

Here’s how the Hornets rated against Jurgen Klopp’s men.

Heurelho Gomes – 7.5

A solid display from the Brazilian who dealt with most of what Liverpool could throw at him. Smart save to deny Can’s drive from distance early on. Could do little to stop the German breaking the deadlock in stunning fashion just before the break.

Showcased his quality again after the half-time interval with a string of fine saves.

Nordin Amrabat – 5 (replaced by Stefano Okaka 85)

More accustomed to a role further up the pitch, Amrabat was uncomfortable with the greater defensive duties expected of a wing-back.

Could hardly account for the quality of Can’s finish for the opener, despite finding himself the wrong side of the Liverpool midfielder.

Also offered little in the way of attacking intent, but did impress with a goal saving challenge with 15 minutes to play.

Sebastian Prodl – 7

Watford Observer:

A strong presence at the heart of the Watford defence and kept Divock Origi at arm’s length with a commanding display as one of three centre-backs. Hugely unlucky to see a fierce injury time volley canon back off the crossbar.

Adrian Mariappa – 6

Returned to the starting XI after his harsh omission at Hull. Like Prodl, did well to shackle the Liverpool attack for much of the game. Was loose in possession at times and fortunate not to be punished for losing the ball when marauding forward in the first half.

Miguel Britos – 6 (replaced by Christian Kabasele 19 minutes)

Injury saw the Watford number three’s day end after just 19 minutes, but did little wrong while on.

Daryl Janmaat – 7.5

Looked to provide width from left back, but his natural right footedness meant his delivery became an issue as he looked to cut inside before crossing. Still an attacking presence and linked up well to fashion to odd opening.

Produced an important interception early in the second half just as Adam Lallana looked set to take aim. Almost found a late equaliser as his near post effort had Simon Mignolet scrabbling to make a save.

Etienne Capoue – 5.5 (replaced by Isaac Success 73)

A familiar story from the former Spurs man as he failed to influence the game in the manner a player of his talent can and perhaps should. Lost the ball in both attacking and defensive situations.

Tom Cleverley – 6

Watford Observer:

Economic with the ball but did little to get Watford on the front foot as he often opted for the simple pass. Decent set-piece delivery.

Abdoulaye Doucoure – 7

Deployed as the deepest of the Watford midfield and struggled early on, giving the ball away cheaply on a number of occasions.

Grew into the game considerably, however, and offered a combative edge in the Golden Boys’ engine room.

M’Baye Niang – 6

Watford’s 3-5-2- formation saw the talented Frenchman partner Troy Deeney in attack and he had the first attempt of the game, driving in from the right and firing tamely at goal.

Was lively in attack and linked up well in much of Watford’s brighter moments.

Troy Deeney – 5.5

The quieter of Watford’s front two and struggled to put his stamp on the game. The host’s failure to get support around Deeney quick enough didn’t help the Watford skipper and his hold up play often went unrewarded


Christian Kabasele – 6.5

Filled in well for the injured Britos and looked comfortable in his first outing since mid-April.

Isaac Success – 5.5

Another brief cameo for the Nigerian and one with few standout moments. Careless pass when Watford had a chance to break summed up a quiet showing.

Stefano Okaka – N/A

Given too little time to impress.