Premier League
Watford2Leicester1

Watford 2-1 Leicester City

Roberto Pereyra
Argentine midfielder Roberto Pereyra scored his second goal for Watford since joining for £11.2m in August

Watford scored inside the opening 33 seconds as they defeated champions Leicester at Vicarage Road.

Etienne Capoue volleyed the Hornets into the lead - their fastest Premier League goal - before Roberto Pereyra curled in a second after 12 minutes.

Leicester pulled one back when Riyad Mahrez converted a penalty after Miguel Britos' clumsy foul on Jamie Vardy.

But the Foxes could not score again and remain without an away league victory this season.

Leicester become only the third reigning top-flight champions, after Leeds in 1992 and Blackburn in 1995, to start a Premier League season without a win from their opening six away games.

A crazy start

Watford had been embarrassed 6-1 at Liverpool in their last match and boss Walter Mazzarri demanded an improved performance.

But even he could not have expected the blistering start they made as they went ahead in the opening minute.

Leicester midfielder Danny Drinkwater, who had missed England's matches against Scotland and Spain with a rib injury, gave the ball away and that enabled Pereyra to sprint down the left wing before his cross was flicked on by Troy Deeney, with Capoue volleying past Ron-Robert Zieler.

Pereyra doubled the advantage shortly after, cutting inside Drinkwater on the edge of the penalty area and curling the ball into the corner.

Leicester fought back with a penalty after only 14 minutes, but were frustrated and denied by a resolute home defence as the hosts held on for the win.

Where have last season's Leicester gone?

Leicester won the league title for the first time in their history last season but looked a pale shadow of that side at Vicarage Road.

Defensively vulnerable and lacking a cutting edge up front, the Foxes slipped to their sixth league defeat of the season, double the amount they had throughout the entire 2015-16 campaign.

One huge concern for Leicester boss Claudio Ranieri would be the form of centre-forward Vardy. Before the game Ranieri said he expected to see a "new Vardy" after he scored in England's 2-2 draw with Spain at Wembley on Tuesday.

However, apart from winning a penalty, which was more down to the reckless challenge from Britos, Vardy looked unlikely to end a goal drought that now stretches to 13 club games.

His only attempt came late on when he shot harmlessly wide and the Foxes need him to rediscover the form that saw him score 24 Premier League goals last season.

Jamie Vardy
Jamie Vardy has not scored for Leicester since the 4-1 loss at Liverpool on 10 September. As this graphic shows, he did not come close to ending that run at Watford with his only attempt at goal well off target

Poor domestically, great in Europe

This result extends a strange, but worrying quirk for Leicester fans - of their side failing to win any of the five matches they have played immediately before a Champions League game.

They remain 14th in the Premier League, but are only two points above the relegation zone, despite impressing in Europe's premier competition.

With 10 points from four Champions League games and without a goal conceded, Leicester are top of Group G and only need two points from their last two games to advance into the last 16. The first of those comes on Tuesday when they entertain Belgian side Club Brugge.

A concern for the Foxes would be that record signing Islam Slimani, who scored the winner in a 1-0 win over Porto, missed the Watford game with what was described as a "slight groin injury".

Leicester's results before Champions League matches this season
10 September: Liverpool 4-1 Leicester24 September: Manchester United 4-1 Leicester
15 October: Chelsea 3-0 Leicester29 October: Tottenham 1-1 Leicester
19 November: Watford 2-1 Leicester

Man of the match - Roberto Pereyra (Watford)

Roberto Pereyra
Pereyra was heavily involved in Watford's first goal and scored the second - his first goal since scoring against Arsenal on his Hornets debut on 27 August

99 not out for Deeney

  • Watford captain Troy Deeney remains on 99 goals in all competitions for the club. He has been stuck on this tally since 1 October, having failed to score in his last five appearances
  • This was Claudio Ranieri's 50th Premier League game in charge of Leicester. He has won 26, drawn 15 and now lost nine times
  • Leicester's Robert Huth made his 300th Premier League appearance, becoming the first German player to reach this milestone
  • This was Watford's first Premier League win over Leicester on their fifth attempt. Leicester have won three times with the other match ending in a draw
  • Watford manager Walter Mazzarri has not lost in any of the 12 games where he has been in charge of a side against a team managed by Ranieri
  • Watford's win was the first time they had beaten a reigning Premier League champion. They had lost four times and drew twice on the other occasions

What they said

Watford manager Walter Mazzarri told BBC Sport: "We got the win and I'm very happy. We played the football that I like my team to play and this time we were good enough to score.

"The way Roberto Pereyra played, not just the goal he scored, he ran the whole game and I am very happy with him.

"It was not easy, we know they are a good team. It was our fault with the penalty, in the last 15 or 20 minutes Leicester pressed a lot and we had to concentrate."

Media playback is not supported on this device

Watford deserved win - Mazzarri

Leicester boss Claudio Ranieri told BBC Sport: "I said to my players 'well done' as they tried to do everything. At the beginning we were losing 2-0, but we got back in the match.

"Of course Watford defended very well. We tried to do our best, the second half was intense but we did not created good chances.

"Their two goals made the match. Our performance was good, the spirit was good and I am positive. When you play with this spirit, I'm positive."

Media playback is not supported on this device

Ranieri 'very positive' despite defeat

What's next?

Leicester are in action again on Tuesday as they host Club Brugge in the Champions League. A win for the Foxes will take them into the last 16 of the competition.

They next play in the Premier League on Saturday, 26 November when they entertain Middlesbrough, with Watford in action the following day with a home league game against Stoke.

Line-ups

Watford

  • 1Gomes
  • 4Kaboul
  • 5Prödl
  • 3BritosBooked at 32mins
  • 22Janmaat
  • 11Behrami
  • 29Capoue
  • 18ZuñigaBooked at 21mins
  • 7N AmrabatSubstituted forGuédiouraat 87'minutes
  • 9DeeneySubstituted forOkakaat 90'minutes
  • 37Pereyra

Substitutes

  • 6Mariappa
  • 17Guédioura
  • 19Sinclair
  • 23Watson
  • 24Ighalo
  • 30Pantilimon
  • 33Okaka

Leicester

  • 21Zieler
  • 17Simpson
  • 5Morgan
  • 6Huth
  • 28FuchsBooked at 53minsSubstituted forSchluppat 68'minutes
  • 26Mahrez
  • 4DrinkwaterBooked at 65mins
  • 13Amartey
  • 11AlbrightonSubstituted forMusaat 78'minutes
  • 20OkazakiSubstituted forGrayat 68'minutesBooked at 81mins
  • 9Vardy

Substitutes

  • 2Hernández
  • 7Musa
  • 10King
  • 12Hamer
  • 15Schlupp
  • 22Gray
  • 27Wasilewski
Referee:
Neil Swarbrick
Attendance:
20,640

Match Stats

Home TeamWatfordAway TeamLeicester
Possession
Home46%
Away54%
Shots
Home10
Away11
Shots on Target
Home3
Away2
Corners
Home4
Away6
Fouls
Home12
Away18

Live Text

Match ends, Watford 2, Leicester City 1.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Watford 2, Leicester City 1.

Attempt missed. Jamie Vardy (Leicester City) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right. Assisted by Wes Morgan.

Jeffrey Schlupp (Leicester City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Adlène Guédioura (Watford).

Foul by Danny Simpson (Leicester City).

Roberto Pereyra (Watford) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Robert Huth (Leicester City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Stefano Okaka (Watford).

Substitution

Substitution, Watford. Stefano Okaka replaces Troy Deeney.

Corner, Leicester City. Conceded by Daryl Janmaat.

Substitution

Substitution, Watford. Adlène Guédioura replaces Nordin Amrabat.

Attempt missed. Nordin Amrabat (Watford) right footed shot from the right side of the box is high and wide to the right. Assisted by Etienne Capoue with a headed pass.

Attempt missed. Daryl Janmaat (Watford) right footed shot from the right side of the box is high and wide to the right. Assisted by Nordin Amrabat.

Booking

Demarai Gray (Leicester City) is shown the yellow card.

Foul by Demarai Gray (Leicester City).

Juan Zuñiga (Watford) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Wes Morgan (Leicester City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Troy Deeney (Watford).

Attempt saved. Robert Huth (Leicester City) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

Attempt blocked. Ahmed Musa (Leicester City) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Riyad Mahrez.

Attempt blocked. Wes Morgan (Leicester City) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked.

Substitution

Substitution, Leicester City. Ahmed Musa replaces Marc Albrighton.

Corner, Leicester City. Conceded by Etienne Capoue.

Corner, Leicester City. Conceded by Juan Zuñiga.

Foul by Robert Huth (Leicester City).

Miguel Britos (Watford) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Corner, Leicester City. Conceded by Younes Kaboul.

Attempt missed. Nordin Amrabat (Watford) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the left. Assisted by Etienne Capoue.

Foul by Wes Morgan (Leicester City).

Troy Deeney (Watford) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Attempt missed. Sebastian Prödl (Watford) header from the centre of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Etienne Capoue with a cross following a corner.

Corner, Watford. Conceded by Marc Albrighton.

Foul by Demarai Gray (Leicester City).

Valon Behrami (Watford) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Daniel Amartey (Leicester City).

Roberto Pereyra (Watford) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Substitution

Substitution, Leicester City. Demarai Gray replaces Shinji Okazaki.

Substitution

Substitution, Leicester City. Jeffrey Schlupp replaces Christian Fuchs.

Attempt missed. Younes Kaboul (Watford) header from the centre of the box is close, but misses the top left corner. Assisted by Roberto Pereyra with a cross following a corner.

goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Liverpool1283130141627
2Man City1283127111627
3Chelsea118122691725
4Arsenal1274125121325
5Tottenham126601881024
6Man Utd125431714319
7Everton125431614219
8Watford125341720-318
9Bournemouth124351416-215
10Southampton123541212014
11Burnley114251115-414
12West Brom113441215-313
13Stoke123451319-613
14Leicester123361420-612
15Middlesbrough112541012-211
16Crystal Palace123271721-411
17West Ham123271323-1011
18Hull123181027-1710
19Sunderland122281221-98
20Swansea121381122-116
View full Premier League table

Top Stories