Paddy Davitt: Player ratings after Canaries' 1-0 Watford defeat

Grant Hanley foiled Andre Gray in Norwich City's 1-0 Championship defeat to Watford

Grant Hanley foiled Andre Gray with a superb intervention in Norwich City's 1-0 Championship defeat to Watford - Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Here is Paddy’s verdict on Daniel Farke’s side, who lacked any real spark against a Watford in the mood to spoil the title party. 

• Tim Krul   

Left exposed by Dan Gosling’s instinctive first time finish. But made an excellent first half stop to claw out Ken Sema’s low, angled left-footed effort.

Just before the half hour mark got his angles spot on to kick away fearsome effort from Ismaila Sarr at his near post. Repeated the trick 10 minutes from the end when Nathaniel Chalobah got to the byline.         7   

• Max Aarons   

Really looked the one most likely to try and spark Norwich’s fitful attacking endeavours. Opened up with a trademark burst down his flank, after controlling Kieran Dowell’s pass, but Todd Cantwell’s step over allowed Watford to clear.

Superb run in the 63rd minute and even better pick out for the late-arriving Cantwell, who skied over on the half-volley. Another cross stood up in the 79th minute caused panic but Watford cleared.

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Only blemish he had a chance to stop Sema at source, in the early part of the move that led to the Hornets’ winner.        7  

• Andrew Omobamidele   

Sloppy lose touch in the 29th minute brought a furious riposte from Daniel Farke towards the young Irishman. But showed his temperament to make a perfectly timed tackle to thwart Joao Pedro five minutes before the break.

Threw himself at a Xavi Quintilla corner but failed to make a connection and took a tumble over the advertising boards for his troubles. Timely late block again on Sema in the 72nd minute.       6

• Grant Hanley (C)  

Another command performance from the captain. Gosling was too sharp for the winner after sneaking behind him but the last ditch tackle on Andre Gray was top drawer defending. Routine excellent patrolling his near post to foil Sema and Sarr.

Big and brave defensive header to clear out a rocket from Will Hughes who caught Tom Cleverley’s corner flush on the volley. Attacking threat at the opposite end when he towered above his marker but his header was cleared inside the six yard box.       8

• Xavi Quintilla   

Thankless task trying to subdue Sarr in that opening period. Must have feared the worst when he was rolled before the Watford winger went down under his challenge but the referee viewed the penalty box collision as accidental.

Strongest suit remains his attacking work. Quality delivery for Grant Hanley’s chance. Improved defensively after the break. Tried to stop Sarr at source. Cleared one dangerous cross away six yards out.       6

 • Kenny McLean   

Got through plenty of clearing work. Particularly defending Watford corners whipped in under the bar. Vital touch to halt Pedro in first half stoppage time. Even bigger interception to cut out a ball for Sarr in the 84th minute, with Watford looking menacing on the counter.       7

• Olly Skipp    

Quality pass threaded to Emi Buendia sparked a counter that ended with Cantwell crowded out. But a miscued swipe saw his clearance pounced on by Pedro to tee up Gosling for the winner.       6

•  Emi Buendia 

Not even the magician could cast his spell against such a well-drilled Hornets midfield and backline. Always glimpses of his quality in any shift. A slaloming run lost Sema and Hughes but Cantwell’s shot was blocked.

Cushioned first time pass for Teemu Pukki brought a free kick Dowell slammed into the visiting wall before the Argentine’s follow up was deflected behind.       6 

• Kieran Dowell   

Two attempts to repeat his wonderful Derby free kick winner but this time the radar was faulty. Powered forward in the 20th minute before unleashing a strike that brushed William Troost-Ekong and spiralled over the bar.

But lacked precision on occasion in possession when Norwich did find him in dangerous pockets. Needed Andrew Omobamidele to bail him out when a sloppy touch sparked a counter led by Pedro.       6

 • Todd Cantwell  

Threatened to be the inspiration during Norwich’s best attacking spell prior to the interval. His pace and trickery caused Watford some problems. Best moment undoubtedly a quality slaloming run past three before a low, left footed effort through the legs of Francisco Sierralta gathered by Bachmann. For a player of his ability, the strike from Aarons’ cut back should hit the target.       6 

• Teemu Pukki   

Limited service, limited chances. A tame header drifted wide from Aarons’ ball. Did produce one twisting run to the byline and inviting cross for Mario Vrancic, who saw his shot strike Sierralta.       6 

City substitutes          

• Hugill (for Dowell, 65)          5 

Had a running battle with the rugged Sierralta. Ended with a booking in stoppage time. Was in the wars as well with an accidental blow to the head. Which he used to good effect to deflect Chalobah’s free kick.

Only real sight of goal in the opposition box was a spot of pinball from an Aarons’ cross.         

• Hernandez (for Quintilla, 81)          5 

Veering run took him past two and into the Watford box before he tumbled over. The penalty appeals came mainly from the touchline. Shot blocked by Adam Masina. 

• Placheta (for Omobamidele, 81)          5 

Couple of probing corners amounted to little in the end. 

• Vrancic (for Cantwell, 90)          5  

That one big chance in stoppage time, when he was left unmarked but had to pull the trigger on his right foot and the ball struck Sierralta.

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