Abdoulaye Doucoure’s late strike wasn’t enough to prevent Watford falling to a 2-1 defeat to Premier League leaders Manchester City on Tuesday.

Ben Foster did his best to keep the visitors at bay at the Vic before Leroy Sane improvised a chested finish in the 40th minute to make it 1-0.

City gave themselves breathing space shortly after the half-time interval before Doucoure’s 85th minute effort gave Watford late hope.

It wasn’t to be though as Watford’s winless run extended to a fifth straight game, while City’s title train rolled on.

Here’s how we rated the Hornets at Vicarage Road.

Ben Foster – 8

Kept Watford in the game in the first half when racing out to deny both Sane and Mahrez’s dinked efforts.

Could do little about either City goal and also made an impressive save low to his right to keep out Mahrez’s curler with the scores at 2-0.

Kiko Femenia – 5

A testing night for the right-back as he came up against the electric Sane who had the beating of him on more than one occasion.

Stuck to his task but the second goal came down his flank.

Craig Cathcart – 6

Watford Observer:

Competed well against Gabriel Jesus and did his best to deal with the ever changing nature of City’s fluid frontline.

Christian Kabasele – 6

Made some vital interceptions, not least when preventing Jesus going through on goal. Like Cathcart, though, City’s movement gave the Belgian centre-back plenty of problems.

Jose Holebas – 4

Mahrez was a terror on the City right and Holebas rarely got anywhere near the Algerian winger. He lost track of City’s number 26 for the second goal and struggled to make an impact going forward.

Will Hughes – 5

Didn’t really impose himself on the game despite putting in a typically committed performance. Watford will hope the injury which forced him off is not too serious.

Abdoulaye Doucoure – 6

Watford Observer:

Scrambled in Watford’s goal, but it was a finish of a man lacking confidence as Doucoure almost fluffed his lines with the goal at his mercy from a matter of yards.

Lost possession on a number of occasions, but never stopped working hard to close down City in the centre of the park.

Nathaniel Chalobah – 5

A chance to make an impression with Etienne Capoue suspended and one which Chalobah failed to take full advantage of.

The game largely passed the England international by, but it was always going to be a tough task given his relative lack of match fitness.

Roberto Pereyra – 5

Had one early foray on the right which ended in him jinking beyond Fernandinho and curling a shot a yard or so wide of the post.

Other than that attempt, there was little sign of the flair which the wide man has brought to the table so far this season.

Troy Deeney – 6

Watford Observer:

Had Watford’s best opening of the first half as he saw a volleyed effort superbly saved by Ederson. Otherwise toiled to get involved despite providing a focal point in attack.

Isaac Success – 5

A physical display but lacked quality on occasions in the final third, notably when squandering a three on two with a wayward pass as Watford looked to break.


Domingos Quina – 6

Wasn’t fazed by the occasion of his Premier League debut after coming on for Hughes and looked comfortable on the ball, spreading some smart passes out wide.

Gerard Deulofeu – 7

Excellent impact from the bench and added a creative spark for the Hornets. One of many runs down the right created the Watford goal.

Andre Gray – N/A

Not given long enough to impress.