Berahino sees two pens saved as Baggies fall to defeat
- Ben Watson scores first-time finish (27)
- Saido Berahino has two spot-kicks saved (67, 87)
- Heurelho Gomes the hero for Hornets
- Attendance: 25,515
- Albion Star Man: Darren Fletcher
WATFORD keeper Heurelho Gomes saved two Saido Berahino penalties as Albion’s late-season frustrations hit new heights at The Hawthorns.
The Baggies were beaten by a solitary goal from former midfielder Ben Watson, despite piling up enough chances to have won the game comfortably.
Berahino found himself at the heart of that story as Baggies relentless pressure drew two spot-kicks from the visitors.
The first in the 67th minute was awarded after Gomes brought down the Albion striker but Berahino’s spot kick was too close to the keeper’s right.
Twenty minutes later, Berahino instantly seized the ball when referee Michael Oliver again pointed to the spot after Stephane Sessegnon when tumbling under the challenge of Etienne Capoue.
Berahino this time picked his spot in the opposite corner and got much more power into his execution but Gomes again defied him with a brilliant diving save.
That helped deal a punishing blow to the Baggies hopes of matching their best Premier League points return of 49 but they really had only themselves to blame.
Albion, fielding an unchanged team to that which had been unlucky to lose at Manchester City the previous week, were slow off the starting blocks but once into their stride frequently had the visitors at full stretch.
But a Watford corner drilled to the near-post by Adlene Guedioura was flicked home by Watson off the inside of the far post.
After that it was all Albion with James McClean dragging a shot wide after beating two men, Sessegnon narrowly missing the target and then setting up Berahino who couldn’t quite turn enough to finish.
After the break, Gomes saved superbly from a Gareth McAuley header while Albion squandered all manner of good positions to let their opponents off the hook.
ALBION: Foster; Dawson, McAuley, Evans, Chester (McManaman 68); Sessegnon, Fletcher, Yacob (Gardner 75), McClean; Berahino, Rondon (Anichebe 68)
Subs: Myhill, Olsson, Sandro, Leko.
WATFORD: Gomes; Nyom, Britos, Prodi, Ake; Guedioura (Suarez 65), Capoue, Watson, Jurado (Behrami 90+1); Ighalo, Deeney.
Subs: Pantilimon, Amrabat, Paredes, Berghuis, Anya.
Bookings: Britos (foul, 32);
Referee: Michael Oliver (Northumberland).