Just when we thought it was safe to get excited again, there's nothing like Watford to bring you back to earth with a bang.

On the back of two committed, entertaining performances, last night's defeat to Bristol City gave drab a bad name, and was pedestrian from start to finish.

That was aside from a 10-minute spell just after half-time when the Hornets finally looked interested - and carved the Robins apart to score a well-worked opener.

But after full-time Marco Silva's rage was felt for the first time following a performance he all-but admitted had been born out of complacency, there is much to improve before Brighton visit the Vic on Saturday.

Here's how we rated the woeful Hornets in their annual early cup exit.

Heurelho Gomes – 5.5
Could’ve done better with the opener, but was left stranded by his defence for Bobby Reid’s goal by some poor defending.

Adrian Mariappa – 6
Possibly Watford’s best player before the break, but allowed Lloyd Kelly space to fire the cross in for City’s second after half-time. Late goal changed little.

Watford Observer:

Sebastian Prodl – 5
Someone with long hair and a German-sounding voice was playing at the back for Watford, but that’s where the similarities to Prodl ended. Looked poor and too easily given the slip on several occasions.

Christian Kabasele – 5.5
Similarly to his defensive team-mate, but looked marginally more convincing. Still should’ve had some kind of idea where Bobby Reid was for the second goal of the night.

Jose Holebas – 5.5
Fairly sound down the left against City’s trickiest customer in Niclas Eliasson, but his deliveries weren’t up to their normal standards. Tried to stop City breaking late on, which was in some ways commendable, but less so the fact he was always going to get sent off for what was a stupid lunge.

Watford Observer:

Etienne Capoue – 6.5
Scored the Watford goal but, along with Watson, showed how much Watford rely on Abdoulaye Doucoure and Nathaniel Chalobah already. Not enough pace in the passing or movement to make things happen.

Ben Watson - 5
Did a lot of running but never looked in danger of creating anything. Kept Jens Hegeler and Gary O’Neil quiet, but they’re not the most creative duo you’ll ever see. Half-hearted attempt at a challenge on Freddie Hinds in the build-up to his equaliser.

Watford Observer:

Nordin Amrabat – 5
Got himself in good positions and put in a couple of decent crosses, but flatters to deceive too often.

Will Hughes – 6
Looked off the pace before half-time and nervous, and was hesitant on the ball. Looked more confident from the off after the break and got the assist for Capoue’s goal with a nice pass.

Richarlison – 6
Ineffective before the break but struck the post after being moved to the right, and looked more of a threat. Still nowhere near his breathtaking best from Saturday.

Watford Observer:

Troy Deeney – 5.5
Didn’t win anywhere near enough in the air for the physical presence he is. Looked off the pace on his return to action, which you can understand after his lack of game time, but will need to improve.


Isaac Success – 7
Looked at his best and like he had a point to prove – and put in some really good deliveries, too. May have forced his way back into Marco Silva’s reckoning on that performance.
Tom Cleverley – 6
Saw little action but was tidy with his passing.
Andre Gray – 5.5
Had half a chance to put Watford back level, but went for the near post and made it easy for Frank Fielding.