Favourite Watford Matches

Discussion in 'The Hornets' Nest - Watford Chat' started by ITK platypus, Jun 5, 2020.

  1. WillisWasTheWorst

    WillisWasTheWorst Its making less grammar mistake's thats important

    Apart from the Deeney moment, no games between the promotion years of '06 and '15. What about Lloyd Doyley, Danny Graham, Almen Abdi, Forestieri etc? Where were you?
    I do agree about the Derby game though. That felt an immense point at the time.
    HornetMan likes this.
  2. Maninblack

    Maninblack Reservist

    So many fantastic memories! As well as those already offered, I would add:

    Oct. 1980: Watford 4-1 Nottm Forest (League Cup 4th Round): They were the European champions and twice successive League Cup holders and we were 2nd Division strugglers but it was one of those special mid-week cup nights under GT where we were invincible. Jenkins was majestic that night, scoring a hat-trick. Long story but I had to cycle 30 miles from where I was to Wolverton station, train to Watford and get back again the same night after the match. I still remember cycling back along dark country lanes with a fading front light battery and a big grin on my face.

    Sept. 1982: Watford 8-0 Sunderland:
    Total annihilation in our first season in the top flight. Particularly remember the 5th (?) goal when Bolton pumped the ball up to their left corner, Callaghan crossed perfectly for Blissett to head in. Took seconds from our area to the back of their net. Sublime!

    Nov. 1982: Spurs 0-1 Watford:
    Our first ever league win away at a 'big' club who were expecting to thump us with Hoddle returning after injury. Scenes in our end for Les Taylor's 87th minute winner! Lost my remaining money and train ticket home in the melee and had to jump over the barriers for the tube and run across the rail tracks & climb over the fence when we got back to Kings Langley station.
  3. HornetMan

    HornetMan Academy Graduate

    There were so many games to choose from!! Honestly, I could have included many more, for instance, QPR away in December? 2010 where we ended their unbeaten start to the season by smashing them 3-1. Live on the BBC. On a Friday night. Brilliant

    Oh and also Reading away in the 2013-2014 season. It finished 3-3 and I think we'd gone 3-1 down (I could be wrong) and Diego Fabbrini equalised in the final minutes to make it 3-3. In a season that we ultimately underachieved in, that was a stand out moment
  4. Knight GT

    Knight GT Predictor extraordinaire 2013/14

    I've been going since the end of the 79/80 season so far too many games to mention but that Spurs games will live with me for the rest of my life. We were going to be taught a footballing lesson and despite our great start the press predicted we would get our comeuppance. Step up Les Taylor who grabbed the late winner and the biggest knees up for a goal I have ever been involved in followed. Lost a shoe. Long way back to Amersham on the tube with one shoe but didn't really care although not sure my mum was impressed!
  5. WillisWasTheWorst

    WillisWasTheWorst Its making less grammar mistake's thats important

    The press really hated that result. At that time many of the football journalists were Spurs fans.
  6. luke_golden

    luke_golden Space Cadet

    August 26th, 2002. Watford 5 v 2 Coventry: At a time when we weren’t really very good, and with a squad of relatively limited players, it wasn’t often that we truly put teams to the sword and properly beat them. I think it was on TV as well, and with the sun shining, it was a great early season game. Danny Webber was absolutely unplayable that day, and though he only scored once, he was a constant menace. John Eustace notched a late consolation for the visitors.

    CYHSYF likes this.
  7. Knight GT

    Knight GT Predictor extraordinaire 2013/14

    The fact lots of people hated that result makes it all so much sweeter
    Maninblack and WillisWasTheWorst like this.
  8. UEA_Hornet

    UEA_Hornet First Team Captain

    Funny how thinking of a football match triggers a random memory. I'll always remember that game for the old boy who was one of the tea room cronies my grandad would chat with pre-match in the East Stand. I think he came to games with his son and grandson. Anyway, I've no idea now how it came about - probably talking score predictions - but someone must have mentioned us winning 3-0 as he said he was so sure we wouldn't score 3, he'd walk out on the spot if we did. Long and probably boring story short, he was good to his word and left before half-time, waving to everyone as he went and leaving his son and grandson to watch the rest of the match. I think it was funnier at the time as things looked pretty grim post-Vialli.
    luke_golden likes this.
  9. HappyHornet24

    HappyHornet24 Crapster Staff Member

    I was surprised the Sunderland game hadn’t been mentioned before this. Two of my favourite memories of watching Watford as a littlun are that match and beating Manchester United 1-0 in the FA Cup, the former for obvious reasons and the latter because it was so unexpected.
  10. PaulM

    PaulM Academy Graduate

    This was my dad and I am the son referred to and my son the grandson. My recollection though is he said he would leave if we got three, we did. He then said I will leave if we get four, we did. He then said I will definitely leave if we get five, we did. He left! He was a bit of a character. He died 10 years ago but he would love the fact that this has been remembered on here so thanks UEA Hornet for the memory.
  11. Jumbolina

    Jumbolina First Team

    Yes great game. I thought Webber would end up playing for Man Utd and England after that game. He was brilliant.
  12. UEA_Hornet

    UEA_Hornet First Team Captain

    I’m sure your recollection is better than mine! That does sound right actually. Funny times.
    Last edited: Jun 12, 2020
  13. I was away for a romantic weekend in Paris. It ruined the weekend when I saw the score in the paper the next day. 8 bloody nil and I'd missed it !
  14. Sort of OK

    Sort of OK First Year Pro

    I also remember that games very well, I was invited by a supplier to hospitality for that game, this has happened regularly over the years but the only time at the Vic, he was a Coventry fan. Nearly 20 years later he still mentions it whenever I see him. Great day.
    luke_golden likes this.
  15. The PozzMan

    The PozzMan Squad Player

    Bit of a random one but beating Cardiff 4-1 in the fog under Mackay stands out a bit for me during some uneventful years on the pitch.
    ITK platypus likes this.
  16. ITK platypus

    ITK platypus Reservist

    If I'm remembering correctly Sordell scored a goal which I couldn't even see from my seat.
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  17. wfc4ever

    wfc4ever First Team Captain

    I remember we also beat Portsmouth 3-0 around the same time live on TV
  18. Hogg-DEENEY!!!

    Hogg-DEENEY!!! First Year Pro

    Was young at the time and didn't have that much interest in football outside of the World Cup and the Euros, but I seem to recall that was the first Watford game I ever watched? (on the telly anyway, first game at the Vic was also against Coventry in the promotion season a few years later)
    luke_golden likes this.
  19. 3000

    3000 Reservist

    One of my favourite ever games at The Vic was when we beat West Brom 1-0 in the FA Cup 4th round in 2003.

    We were battling relegation at the base of the championship and they were in the Premier League. They took the whole of the Vicarage Road end which back then was very rare so you could feel the occasion. We were in their faces from the off and the pitch was at that stage of the season where it was all churned up so it was a proper traditional cup tie. We won a penalty that Neil Cox missed but about 10 mins later Heidar Helguson went 1 on 1 with the keeper and slotted it home in the Rookery and it descended in bedlam. I can vividly remember the roar and sheer pandemonium after that went in, it was absolute bedlam. You have to remember these were the days where there was next to nothing to cheer about watching Watford, moments like this were very rare so going 1-0 up against a premier league side was the biggest moment of the season so far. It was very rowdy in the Rookery, I clearly remember blokes jumping around topless and launching bottles of beer at the West Brom goal keeper. Even though we were a struggling side back then I have my fondest memories of Watford from this era. It just felt like you were part of something.

    Everything about it was just the beauty of football while it was still pure. This is what I miss, it will never be like that again.
    luke_golden likes this.
  20. Warrington Hornet

    Warrington Hornet Reservist

    Some great games listed by everyone.

    One of my favourites was;

    Division 4 - 1977/78 Brentford 0 Watford 3

    Midweek game at Griffin Park and in those days Brentford was about as close as it got to a local derby. Their Chairman at the time (Dan Tana?) spent the days before the match telling everyone how great they were and that we were over-rated, etc, etc.

    They were averaging crowds of about 5,000 at the time and that night it rose to 14,500 and we absolutely smashed them.
  21. WillisWasTheWorst

    WillisWasTheWorst Its making less grammar mistake's thats important

    I really loved the whole of that Cup run to the semifinal. Totally unexpected because it was so against the odds.
  22. WillisWasTheWorst

    WillisWasTheWorst Its making less grammar mistake's thats important

    Remember the potential pitch invasion repelled single-handed by the fearsome Sam Ellis?
  23. Warrington Hornet

    Warrington Hornet Reservist

    Sam Ellis was frightening - not someone to mess with!

    Another game for some strange reason that sticks in my mind was:

    Division 4 - 1975/76 Watford 2 Reading 1

    Reading were flying high (got promoted that season) and we were dreadful, especially away from home. Crowds were about 4,500 on a good day but it rose to 6,644 that day and we beat them with an injury time winner by Ross Jenkins (Arthur Horsfield got the other). I suppose it was a high in a dreadful season which makes it stick in my mind and these's not a lot better than celebrating a last minute winner!
  24. Humpty Wazzok

    Humpty Wazzok Academy Graduate

    just a few...

    6th Feb 1986. Maine Road FA 4th Cup 2nd replay. 3-1 to us.
    Only about 150 Horns there as snow closed the M1. I was living in Manchester, so go to the match. We were allowed into the Kippax because the away end was uncovered and it was snowing so much. John Barnes played a blinder. Had lots of coins thrown at us by the Mancs, but we made more noise than them... :D

    Then, I'd have to add the Championship Promotion Final v Leeds, and of course, the FA Cup semi final from last year...
  25. WillisWasTheWorst

    WillisWasTheWorst Its making less grammar mistake's thats important

    I was at this game, as well as the original tie and replay. A City fan friend of mine drove us up from London on a snow-covered M1/M6 (real winters in those days). I certainly didn’t go in the Kippax and I don’t remember it snowing during the game but I might be wrong. It was bitterly cold, though. Neil Smillie scored for us.
    Certainly snowier was the previous round at Highfield Road, Coventry. Kenny Jackett scored in that one.
  26. Humpty Wazzok

    Humpty Wazzok Academy Graduate

    It was the far right hand end of the Kippax, pretty much in the corner. Snow everywhere except on the heated pitch...
    WillisWasTheWorst likes this.
  27. samuihorn

    samuihorn Academy Graduate

    I was at that one too. One of the few times we went by club coach.
    Freezing, snowing... They were all over us 1st half, then the players turned it on & romped it.
    Got home about 4am or something silly then up for work at 6:30.
    Great memories.
  28. Filbert

    Filbert Leicester supporting bloke

    Was anyone at the first league game at the Walkers Stadium?
  29. hemelhorn88

    hemelhorn88 Academy Graduate

    Many memorable goals from Helguson. This being one of the more memorable. Me and my Dad had season tickets in Rookery the.one of the only times old blokes behind us didn't moan for 90 mins
  30. Mazzereth

    Mazzereth Academy Graduate

    I was at this game, I had also just turned 15. I live in Wiltshire so it was local to me, I went with my mother, because I was cool.
  31. Mazzereth

    Mazzereth Academy Graduate

    2nd May 1992. Watford 5 - 2 Bristol City

    End of season, nothing to play for game that was very entertaining.
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  32. LondonOrn

    LondonOrn Reservist

    Sadly I became a fan much later than my age would suggest (first game Liverpool 2-3 in the 1999/00 season) and have seen/gone to many fewer games than I should've. But I'm fortunate enough to have gone to some crackers, including a fair few of the favourites listed here - listed in chronological order as I can't be bothered to decide how to rank them:

    Watford 3-0 Leeds 21/05/2006 - after winning by the same scoreline in the semis at Palace (one of the Watford games I most regret missing to this day, along with Doyley Day, the Leicester and Brighton games and the comeback at West Ham) rarely if ever has a team made winning promotion look so easy. A perfect finale to an incredible and most unexpected season.
    Watford 2-0 Middlesbrough 04/11/2006 - a match that ultimately didn't mean much in the grand scheme of things as we got relegated with something to spare in a very disappointing season that could've have been so different if we'd had King to lead the line with Henderson, but at the time, our first win back in the Prem at the 11th attempt, an impressive and comfortable 2-0 victory (better than any we'd achieved in the whole of 1999/00) was something special.
    Watford 4-1 Cardiff 28/12/2010 - part of a run of six successive league wins including an amazing 3-1 at leaders QPR that mirrored the winning streak at the start of 2006, this was my favourite match of my favourite season between 2005/06 and the Pozzo's takeover and made us look firm play-off contenders - just a shame the season was to peter out as Watford seasons so often do...
    Watford 1-0 Birmingham 18/04/2015 - a game that was a lot more comfortable than the winning margin suggests, this put us top of the Championship, one step further to the promised land and one step further to achieving our first major trophy, and Deeney was immense that day and did everything but score.
    Arsenal 1-2 Watford FA Cup 13/03/2016 - after the Wolves semi-final, the most exciting and tense game I've been to, the atmosphere was electric and the taunting of Arsenal fans afterwards was fun. If only we'd played like that for the rest of the second half of the season!
    Watford 3-1 Man Utd 18/09/2016 - a game that completed a nightmare opening sequence of fixtures from which many thought we'd do well to get even a point, but in the end got through with ease with 7 points from 5 games, thanks in no small part to this memorable victory over a team against which we'd lost our last ten matches. Our first true league scalp of the Pozzo era.
    Southampton 0-2 Watford 09/09/2017 - a perfect tonic after going to or watching a sizable number of away games of the Mazzarri era and witnessing almost unmitigated dross, I've never seen us look so comfortable in an away game even in the Championship. Seeing us stroke the ball around in the closing minutes and hearing the chants of "We're too good for you" was a joy to behold/hear.
    Swansea 1-2 Watford 23/09/2017
    Newcastle 0-3 Watford 25/11/2017

    These weren't quite so impressive but great away trips and the games epitomized the team spirit that was so lacking during the previous reason (and sadly, much of the season thereafter).
    Watford 4-1 Chelsea 05/02/2018
    Watford 3-2 Wolves 07/04/2019

    Games I've seen on the box:
    Watford 2-0 Burnley 09/03/2003 WERE GOING TO WEMBLEY
    Watford 1-1 West Ham 22/08/2006 First home game back in the big time, the team and crowd were buzzing, optimism was high and we still had King in the side.
    Brighton 0-2 Watford 25/04/2015 Game itself wasn't a classic and the win was hard-fought, but the elation at the final whistle and especially when later results unexpectedly went our way couldn't be beaten.
    Watford 2-0 West Ham 31/10/2015 People usually mention the Liverpool 3-0 as the match of the season, but in some ways, this was more impressive; we comfortably beat and dominated a West Ham side who finished higher in the table and who'd picked up 13 points in their first 5 away matches, including wins at Arsenal, Liverpool and Man City.
    Watford 3-0 Liverpool 21/12/2015
    West Ham 2-4 Watford 10/09/2016
    Many of us must have been fearing the worst when we went 2-0 down having picked up one point from our first three games, but then Ighalo when he still had some semblance of scoring form set the ball rolling, and Holebas scored a stunner to seal the comeback.
    Watford 2-0 Brighton 11/08/2018
    Watford 2-1 Tottenham 02/09/2018

    Got our season off to a flyer, and our first win against a top four team.
    Wolves 0-2 Watford 20/10/2018 This was even more impressive than the Southampton match given the calibre of our opponents.
    Watford 2-1 Crystal Palace FA Cup 16/03/2019 Completed the treble over our previous bogey team to book another trip to Wembley!
    Any of the home games we won under Pearson when Deulofeu and Sarr were in the starting line-up, but Watford 2-0 Manchester United 22/12/2019 and Watford 3-0 Liverpool 29/02/2020 cap the lot.

    Games I've followed on the radio or where I've checked the score and read about afterwards:

    Blackburn 3-4 Watford 12/09/2000 Incredible comeback at one of the promotion favourites from 2-0 down, part of a blistering start to the season when we won 12 and drew 3.
    Watford 3-2 Charlton League Cup 27/11/2001 One of few highlights of the Vialli era
    Watford 5-2 Coventry 26/08/2002
    Watford 1-1 Wolves 03/11/2002
    Watford 1-0 West Brom FA Cup 26/01/2003

    Along with the Burnley game, these represented the great team spirit in a cobbled together side that might have been fighting relegation with the club in a financially parlous state following the disastrous Vialli reign but finished in a comfortable midtable, flirting with the play-offs for much of the season.
    Watford 5-2 Southampton League Cup 09/11/2004
    Watford 3-0 Portsmouth League Cup 30/11/2004
    Norwich 2-3 Watford 22/01/2006
    Bolton 3-4 Watford 14/02/2015

    Put the last two together because they were won in thrillingly similar fashion from two amazing promotion-winning seasons - nothing beats coming from behind to win a thriller away from home in the last minute!
    West Ham 0-2 Watford 22/12/2018 A nice and unexpected win following patchy form against opponents who'd won four in a row, who we leapfrogged to 7th in the table.

    And to coin a phrase from the long-missed BSaD: famous defeats - mostly against Man U:

    Watford 2-3 Man Utd 29/04/2000 One of many 3-2 games which we were mostly on the wrong end of, this was probably the best - a fun, feisty affair and much closer than most would expect between an already-relegated side and the champions on an 11-match winning streak.
    Man Utd 1-0 Watford 02/03/2016 If we'd played like this more often and still got the same results in the second half of the 2015/16 season, I think many more would have been in favour of giving Flores another season - a game in which we did everything right except score.
    Chelsea 4-2 Watford 21/10/2017 Gutted at the end, but the most entertaining defeat I've been to - if only Rich had taken his chances when we were 2-1 up and on top...
    Watford 1-2 Man Utd 15/09/2018 Performances later on were more inconsistent, but we still looked like the side that deservedly won four in a row and we were unlucky not to get a draw.
    Teide1 likes this.
  33. Maninblack

    Maninblack Reservist

    Just remembered 10th Nov '92: Watford 2 - 1 Leeds in the League Cup. They were flying high in the newly formed Prem and we were in our championship doldrums (or was it still known as Div. 1 then?). Anyway, in the torrential rain - no roof for the Vic Road end yet - we won through. My only memory of it however was in the 2nd half at 2 - 1 up when a certain Eric Cantona beat the offside trap by yards only to find his shot easily saved. Not the greatest match but a rare highlight from those barren years.
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  34. LondonOrn

    LondonOrn Reservist

    We weren't fighting relegation, although we could have been given our financial situation and the side we had. This is what the old Division 1 table looked like at the time we played West Brom:


    The next season we struggled a lot more, but managed to take Chelsea to a replay in a 2-2 draw.
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2020 at 9:24 PM
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  35. WillisWasTheWorst

    WillisWasTheWorst Its making less grammar mistake's thats important

    2003 was the year Ray Lewington was persuaded to actually rest some players in league games in preparation for Cup ties because we were comfortable enough in the table.

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