WATFORD WERE handed a harsh lesson by Sam Allardyce’s West Ham outfit who ran out comfortable winners at Vicarage Road in a match they controlled.
Goals from James Tomkins, Joey O’Brien, Carlton Cole and Scott Parker saw the visitors claim their second win of the Championship season.
Watford named the same starting 11 that faced both Burnley and Derby whilst West Ham stuck with the same side the saw off the challenge of Doncaster Rovers on Saturday.
The Hammers were ahead after just three minutes when centre-half James Tomkins was left criminally unmarked at the far post to direct a header past Scott Loach from a corner.
Watford got back into the contest after the early setback with Marvin Sordell having the ‘Orns best chance as he collected a long ball before turning his marker and curling goalwards. Goalkeeper Rob Green was able to palm the striker’s effort wide though.
On the stroke of half-time, right-back Joey O’Brien doubled the Hammers lead when he collected a pass following Martin Taylor’s loose pass and drove forward before slotting past Loach at the second attempt.
Watford made an early second half change with youngster Gavin Massey replacing the ineffectual Chris Iwelumo and quickly showed more will and desire but it was to little prevail.
West Ham cranked up the pressure and carved Sean Dyche’s men open leaving left-back Herita Ilunga to pull a low cross into the six-yard box for Carlton Cole to tape in.
Parker came close when he rattled a powerful effort against the stanchion before beating Loach in injury time with a low effort into bottom right-hand corner following a driving run.
In the long run, it was men against boys but the goals conceded were frustratingly soft. Though you wouldn’t have expected the ‘Orns to turn over a top-notch West Ham side, Dyche’s men will face many more decent opposition this season and they will have to garner some points from them.
Derb County: Green; O’Brien, Tomkins (Faye), Reid, Ilunga; Collison (Faubert), Parker, Noble, Taylor; Nolan; Cole (Piquionne).
Scott Loach – 6
No real chance with any of the goals.
Lloyd Doyley – 6
Dogged defending as ever from Lloydinho.
Martin Taylor – 5
Careless error for the game-defining second goal.
Adrian Mariappa – 6
Cool customer defensively.
Carl Dickinson – 7
Potential to be a bit of a Hornet’s legend in the making. Committed and tidy.
Mark Yeates – 7
Anything positive came through the wideman.
John Eustace (c) – 6
Over-run in midfield.
Ross Jenkins – 5
Never matched Mark Noble and Scott Parker.
Craig Forsyth – 6
Hard working, but he doesn’t really look like a natural wideman.
Marvin Sordell – 7
Outshone his striker partner Chris Iwelumo but unable to beat Rob Green.
Chris Iwelumo – 5
Immobile, lazy and ineffective. How long before he gets dropped?
Troy Deeney – 6
Didn’t have time to get into the game properly but used the ball well.
Gavin Massey – 6
Full of energy if nothing else.