Barnsley suffered a third straight league defeat for the first time in a year with all three coming against the division’s current top three teams.
It is the first time Barnsley have lost a trio of matches in the Championship since January/February 2020 when they were defeated by Bristol City, Preston and Charlton.
The decisive goal came from the penalty spot, the third goal conceded from the spot this season.
Barnsley have now conceded a goal from each of the last eight penalties faced (excluding shootouts), Adam Davies saving from Portsmouth’s Omar Bogle in February 2019 is the last one to miss.
It was scored by Troy Deeney who has now netted five goals against Barnsley for the Hornets, including in each of the last three meetings at Vicarage Road.
This was the first league game where a penalty has broken the deadlock against Barnsley since November 2018 at Sunderland.
It is the first time a spot-kick has been the only goal in a Barnsley league game since August 2015 when Conor Hourihane’s 12 yard effort secured a 1-0 League One victory over Burton.
It is the first time Barnsley have lost a game 1-0 with a penalty in the league since Boxing Day 2014 at Preston.
Barnsley have now conceded the first goal in seven of their last eight Championship games (W3 L3) and in 11 of the last 13 (W4 L7)
The Reds have gone back to back games without scoring for the first time since September when they lost 6-0 at Chelsea in the cup and then drew 0-0 with Coventry in the league.
They have now gone three league games in a row without scoring for the first time since the opening three Championship games of 2020-2021 (0-1 v Luton, 0-2 v Reading, 0-0 v Coventry)
It is the first time they have lost three successive league games all without scoring since November 2017 (0-1 v Cardiff, 0-2 v Leeds, 0-3 v Reading)
Barnsley have lost their first three league games of a calendar year for the first time since 2009 when they lost their first four (0-1 v Southampton, 0-4 v Norwich, 1-2 v Ipswich, 0-2 v Bristol City)
They have failed to score in any of their first three league games of a calendar year for the first time since 1999 (0-2 v West Brom, 0-0 v Birmingham, 0-1 v Oxford) and have lost their first three without scoring for the first time since 1956 (0-1 v Leicester, 0-4 v Middlesbrough, 0-2 v Bristol City)
Despite defeat one goal is the least Barnsley have conceded at Vicarage Road in five visits since a 1-0 defeat in April 2011. The three in-between had seen them lose 2-1, 4-1 and 3-0.
Only one team has scored in this fixture in three successive meetings and four of the last five.
This is the first time both league encounters have finished 1-0 since 2009-2010 (they have met in four seasons in-between)
Barnsley have now lost six successive visits to Vicarage Road and have won only one of the last 11.
Watford have the best home record in the Championship this season with this their 10th victory from 13 matches (D2 L1)
Their 23 goals is also a divisional high at home, two more than Bournemouth.
Home and away only Swansea have conceded less goals than Watford’s 17 with this the Hornets 11th Championship clean sheet of 2020-2021.
Each of Barnsley’s last four league defeats have come against the current top four (Swansea x2, Norwich and Watford)
Since Valerian Ismael took over at the end of October the Reds have lost eight league matches, six of which have come against the current top six (Brentford, Bournemouth, Swansea, Norwich, Swansea, Watford) including each of their last five.
Barnsley have now lost seven of their eight matches against the current top six (W1)
Barnsley’s last 12 matches have seen either them score twice or not score at all (Birmingham 2-1, Bournemouth 0-4, Wycombe 2-1, Sheffield Wednesday 2-1, Preston 2-1, Swansea 0-2, Huddersfield 2-1, Rotherham 2-1, Norwich 0-1, Tranmere 2-0, Swansea 0-2, Watford 0-1)
Barnsley have gone 19 games without a draw (all under Ismael) (W11 L8) - prior to this they had drawn four out of five.
It is their longest run without a stalemate in all competitions since a run of 19 between December 2014 and March 2015 (W11 L8)
Each of Barnsley’s last five defeats have come without scoring (Norwich 0-1, Swansea, 0-2, Bournemouth 0-4, Swansea 0-2, Watford 0-1) and indeed six of the last seven. Since Ismael took charge the only defeat Barnsley have netted in was a 2-1 reverse at Blackburn with the Reds goal coming in the 90th minute.
Barnsley have now gone 13 league games without a clean sheet, their longest league run since a run of 18 between 15th September 2019 – 26th December 2019.
Barnsley had 11 shots in the game, their most on the road since Sheffield Wednesday in December.
However NONE were on target, their first blank of the season and first since the Cardiff home game on the 7th March 2020.
Ironically Watford failed to muster a shot on target in the reverse fixture at Oakwell in October.
1 Jack Walton
26. Michael Sollbauer
30. Michal Helik
6. Mads Andersen
7. Callum Brittain
27. Alex Mowatt
21. Romal Palmer
4. Callum Styles
29. Victor Adeboyejo
9. Cauley Woodrow
11. Conor Chaplin
14. Carlton Morris (for Chaplin 57)
28. Dominik Frieser (for Adeboyejo 57)
8. Herbie Kane (for Palmer 69)
20. Toby Sibbick (for Styles 89)
19. Patrick Schmidt, 22. Clarke Oduor, 34. Jasper Moon, 40. Brad Collins, 44. Ali Omar.
26. Daniel Bachmann
21. Kiko Femenia
5. William Troost-Ekong
31. Francisco Sierralta
11. Adam Masina
23. Ismaila Sarr
8. Tom Cleverley
19. Will Hughes
12. Ken Sema
9. Troy Deeney
18. Andre Gray
7. Philip Zinckernagel (for Sema 62)
10. Joao Pedro (for Deeney 62)
14. Nathaniel Chalobah (for Cleverley 71)
3. Jeremy Ngakia (for Gray 82)
15. Craig Cathcart (for Troost-Ekong 82)
32. Marc Navarro, 6. Ben Wilmot, 35. Adam Parkes, 16. James Garner.
Watford manager Xisco Munoz said:
"I'm very happy because in front of us we had a difficult team. For me it was a good performance.
"We need to understand we need to improve more and work harder - it doesn't matter what happens now with the table.
"Every time we have the chance Troy is a special man for me - he's also helped me in the dressing room because he is the big story here - it's important I have a good relationship with him because he's a special man and every time he gives 200% for the team."
Sky Bet Championship results
TUESDAY 19TH JANUARY 2021
Derby County (21st) 1-0 AFC Bournemouth (6th)
Reading (5th) 3-0 Coventry City (18th)
Lucas Joao 16
Rotherham United (22nd) 3-3 Stoke City (8th)
MacDonald og 14
Watford (4th) 1-0 BARNSLEY (11th)
Deeney pen 27
WEDNESDAY 20TH JANUARY 2021
Norwich City (1st) 2-0 Bristol City (9th)
Brentford (3rd) 1-0 Luton Town (13th)
Cardiff City (15th) 0-1 Queens Park Rangers (17th)
Huddersfield Town (14th) 0-1 Millwall (16th)
Nottingham Forest (20th) 1-2 Middlesbrough (7th)
Mbe Soh 90+3
Birmingham City (17th) 0-1 Preston North End (10th)
Barnsley lie in 11th place in the Sky Bet Championship with 34 points from 25 games. We are 8 points off the Play-Offs, 12 points off the Automatic Promotion Places, 19 points off First Place and 14 points above the Relegation Zone.
Up to 20/1/21
FA Cup Fourth Round: Barnsley v Norwich City, Saturday 23rd January 2021. Kick-Off: 3pm
On The Road:
Sky Bet Championship Matchday Twenty Seven: Nottingham Forest v Barnsley, Saturday 30th January 2021. Kick-Off: 3pm