Match ends, West Ham United 2, Watford 0.
West Ham United 2-0 Watford
Manager David Moyes says he is targeting a top-10 finish after his West Ham side put further distance between themselves and the relegation zone with victory over Watford.
Moyes took over the Hammers in November when they were 18th in the table with nine points from 11 games.
Goals by Javier Hernandez and Marko Arnautovic took them to 30 points - five above the relegation zone and just one behind 10th-placed Bournemouth.
"When I took over we were in the relegation zone and I'd have said 'you're kidding' if you'd said we could get into the top 10," said the former Manchester United boss.
"It's great credit to the players. We want to keep improving. There's not that big a points difference between 11th, 10th and ninth."
Mexico forward Hernandez, who had earlier had a goal ruled out for offside, took advantage of Marvin Zeegelaar's slip to power home Michail Antonio's cross.
Austria forward Arnautovic, back in the side after three games out with a hamstring injury, marked his return with a tap-in to double the lead at London Stadium.
Watford, who remain 11th, went close through Adrian Mariappa's header and Gerard Deulofeu's free-kick but Adrian was equal to both efforts.
"We were very soft in the first half and didn't create many clear chances during the game," said Hornets boss Javier Gracia.
Welcome win for Moyes
The build-up to this game was overshadowed by speculation over the future of Hammers boss David Moyes, who only took charge in November.
Four games without a win, including an FA Cup exit at League One Wigan, had split fans but co-owner David Sullivan said before kick-off that he hoped the Scot would stay as the club's manager for "many years".
Whether he does remains to be seen but this result will have appeased some of those who were beginning to doubt Moyes, who had new signing Patrice Evra on the substitutes bench.
His fifth win in 16 league games in charge was the result of a hard-working performance, inspired by a wonderful display by Arnautovic.
In addition to their two goals, West Ham were denied a penalty when Mariappa clattered Arnautovic, while Hornets keeper Orestis Karnezis also denied the former Stoke City player with a fine save before the big number seven eventually scored.
"We have threats in attacking areas - Hernandez, Antonio and Arnautovic - which ultimately hurt them in the end," added Moyes.
Gracia's first Premier League defeat
Watford had arrived at London Stadium on the back of a morale-boosting 4-1 win over champions Chelsea.
Yet their form away from Vicarage Road remains a concern.
It is three months since the Hornets last won on the road, while the team that put three past 10-man Chelsea in the space of six minutes last Monday have not managed an away goal since 2 January.
What will hurt manager Gracia more is that this defeat was self-inflicted.
Zeegelaar's unfortunate slip allowed Hernandez to open the scoring before a series of defensive failures led to Arnautovic doubling the lead from close range.
"The problem today wasn't a striker who will score," added Gracia. "We have Troy Deeney, we have other players. Today we didn't create clear chances."
Gracia and his players will be relieved that their next two games are at home.
Man of the match - 'He scares defenders'
Match of the Day pundit Danny Murphy:
I felt when Arnautovic played in wide areas at Stoke he spent too much energy tracking back. David Moyes has recognised to play him up front. What he gives them is a presence, thev've lacked that. He can see a pass, dribble and score a goal. He's had time out but looked sharp.
He scares defenders and they look a different team when he's playing.
Home and away - the stats
- West Ham have gone five games without defeat at the London Stadium in all competitions for the first time.
- Watford are winless in their past seven Premier League away games, failing to score on five occasions in that run.
- Javier Hernandez has scored in three of his past four Premier League games for West Ham (three goals), as many as he had scored in his opening 17 this season (four goals).
- The Hammers kept their first clean sheet since December (3-0 at Stoke), ending a run of eight games in which they had conceded.
Both West Ham and Watford have two weeks to prepare for their next league games as they have both been knocked out of the FA Cup. Both face Merseyside opposition next in the Premier League.
The Hammers travel to Anfield to face Liverpool on 24 February (15:00 GMT), while Watford entertain Everton on the same day (17:30 GMT).
- 5ZabaletaBooked at 44mins
- 18João MárioSubstituted forByramat 77'minutes
- 17HernándezSubstituted forHugillat 88'minutes
- 7ArnautovicSubstituted forRiceat 84'minutes
- 4José Fonte
- 5PrödlBooked at 90mins
- 22ZeegelaarSubstituted forPereyraat 56'minutes
- 7DeulofeuSubstituted forLukebakioat 75'minutes
- 11RicharlisonSubstituted forGrayat 82'minutes
- Graham Scott
- Shots on Target
Second Half ends, West Ham United 2, Watford 0.
Offside, West Ham United. Pablo Zabaleta tries a through ball, but Sam Byram is caught offside.
Sebastian Prödl (Watford) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.
Foul by Sebastian Prödl (Watford).
Jordan Hugill (West Ham United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Attempt blocked. Adrian Mariappa (Watford) header from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by José Holebas with a cross.
Adrian Mariappa (Watford) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Jordan Hugill (West Ham United).
Substitution, West Ham United. Jordan Hugill replaces Chicharito.
Corner, Watford. Conceded by Sam Byram.
Attempt blocked. Adrian Mariappa (Watford) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Dodi Lukebakio with a cross.
Corner, Watford. Conceded by Declan Rice.
Substitution, West Ham United. Declan Rice replaces Marko Arnautovic.
Substitution, Watford. Andre Gray replaces Richarlison.
Attempt missed. Dodi Lukebakio (Watford) left footed shot from outside the box is too high. Assisted by Abdoulaye Doucouré.
Attempt saved. Richarlison (Watford) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Dodi Lukebakio.
Adrian Mariappa (Watford) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Marko Arnautovic (West Ham United).
Goal! West Ham United 2, Watford 0. Marko Arnautovic (West Ham United) left footed shot from the left side of the six yard box to the bottom left corner. Assisted by Aaron Cresswell following a corner.
Corner, West Ham United. Conceded by José Holebas.
Substitution, West Ham United. Sam Byram replaces João Mário.
Attempt missed. Sebastian Prödl (Watford) header from very close range is too high. Assisted by José Holebas with a cross following a corner.
Corner, Watford. Conceded by Cheikhou Kouyaté.
Substitution, Watford. Dodi Lukebakio replaces Gerard Deulofeu.
Corner, West Ham United. Conceded by Daryl Janmaat.
Attempt missed. Etienne Capoue (Watford) right footed shot from more than 35 yards misses to the right. Assisted by Abdoulaye Doucouré.
Offside, Watford. José Holebas tries a through ball, but Troy Deeney is caught offside.
Corner, Watford. Conceded by Angelo Ogbonna.
Attempt saved. Gerard Deulofeu (Watford) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom left corner.
Substitution, Watford. Roberto Pereyra replaces Marvin Zeegelaar.
Gerard Deulofeu (Watford) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
Foul by Cheikhou Kouyaté (West Ham United).
Corner, West Ham United. Conceded by Sebastian Prödl.
Attempt missed. Cheikhou Kouyaté (West Ham United) header from very close range is close, but misses to the left. Assisted by João Mário with a cross following a corner.
Corner, West Ham United. Conceded by Adrian Mariappa.
Attempt missed. Cheikhou Kouyaté (West Ham United) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the left.
Corner, Watford. Conceded by Aaron Cresswell.
Troy Deeney (Watford) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
Foul by Mark Noble (West Ham United).