A good start became a great one for Watford at Southampton yesterday afternoon, as the Hornets not only kept a third clean sheet in succession but also put a disappointing Saints outfit to the sword in professional fashion.

The game was confined to the latter stages of Match of the Day last night, which was understandable on the back of a game which never got going as a spectacle, but for anyone seeking a guide on the perfect away performance, was right up there.

Marco Silva's love of home comforts seems to be a distant memory at the moment; the Hornets' two victories have both come away from home, and have forged back-to-back Premier League wins on the road for only the second time in the club's history.

The latest win was a battle which Watford dominated in midfield, and looked assured in throughout as they deservedly returned from St Mary's with three points.

Here's how the Hornets' warriors rated on the South Coast:

Heurelho Gomes - 6.5
Largely a passenger, thanks to the performance of those in front of him in keeping Southampton at bay for so long. Largely strong from crosses and commanded his box when necessary. Kicking has improved, and got some good value out of launching it long to Richarlison before half-time.

Kiko Femenia - 6.5
Most of Southampton's attacks in the first half came down his side, and he was less of an attacking outlet than we have seen previously. However, made a crucial block at 0-0 to stop Southampton having a clear route to goal and was generally assured.

Watford Observer:

Younes Kaboul - 7.5
Alongside his defensive partner marshalled Manolo Gabbiadini superbly, and stood firm from the rare moments the Saints got anywhere near Watford's 18 yard box. An impressively committed performance, and a shame to see him injured.

Christian Kabasele - 7
Improved after half-time but wasn't poor before it either, made a telling interception on Jack Stephens' goalbound effort from a corner moments before Daryl Janmaat put the visitors two ahead. Has really turned his Watford career around from last season.

Jose Holebas - 6.5
Relatively quiet going forward, which could have been an instruction from Marco Silva with Southampton expected to be dangerous out wide. Solid defensively, though, but set-pieces a little less dangerous than normal.

Abdoulaye Doucoure - 8
Rapidly becoming Watford's most important player, assured in the ball and made more passes than anyone else on the pitch. Got the goal to match, and does so much good work to get the ball forward and out of difficult situations.

Watford Observer:

Nathaniel Chalobah - 7.5
His best game since returning to Watford, and given a lot of freedom to get forward early on. Some lovely touches and excellent passing, and came close to making something happen on a few occasions. Impressive.

Andre Carrillo - 6.5
Very quiet before half-time and looked half a yard off the pace, which is understandable after his world tour in the past week. Improved noticably after the break, with his defensive work was the most impressive part of his game.

Tom Cleverley - 7
Always busy and defended from the front throughout, with some smart movement and passing to boot. Can easily go under the radar but looks a different player under Silva, and he knows it.

Richarlison - 6.5
Probably his quietest game in a Watford shirt, saw plenty of the ball in wide positions and had Cedric on toast at times, but didn't see a huge amount of end product. Still bright, and still pinching ourselves to remind us he's only 20.

Andre Gray - 5.5
Ideally Andre would be exempt from these ratings, because the fact he didn't get into the game at all was largely beyond his control. Never stopped running but from a couple of opportunities, again, would do better with a better first touch. We'll see the best of him in time, no doubt.

Watford Observer:


Adrian Mariappa (for Kaboul, 62) - 7
Any worries that Watford's defence would be breached with their fifth-choice centre-back on the field proved unfounded as he slotted into the back four seamlessly.

Daryl Janmaat (for Femenia, 62) - 7.5
Looked his normal self and will be a valuable player to have back, adding a goal to his usual reliable performance at right-back.

Troy Deeney (for Gray, 84) - N/A