Late Gomes penalty save helps Watford salvage point at Bournemouth
Published 03/10/2015 | 17:21
Watford had both goalkeepers to thank for a point after Artur Boruc's howler and penalty save from Heurelho Gomes helped earn them a 1-1 draw at Bournemouth.
Boruc gifted Watford an equaliser when he made an almighty hash of a backpass, allowing Odion Ighalo to nick the ball and score his fifth goal of the season.
Glenn Murray, who had headed Bournemouth into the lead, had the chance to slot in the winner from the penalty spot with seven minutes left.
But Gomes guessed right to beat out the spot-kick and ensure the battle of the newly-promoted teams ended all-square.
Murray answered Bournemouth's striker SOS after top scorer Callum Wilson was ruled out for six months with a knee injury.
The former Crystal Palace striker had already looped one header onto the roof of the net, but made no mistake when presented with a carbon copy opportunity just before the half-hour mark.
Simon Francis reached the byline and laid the ball back to Matt Ritchie, who swung it in just as Murray tip-toed in behind a leaden-footed Hornets defence to guide his header home.
Murray was lucky to make it to half-time on the pitch, however, after escaping with a yellow card for a vicious tackle on Etienne Capoue, with whom he had clashed off the ball moments earlier.
But moments later Watford gained revenge of their own with their first chance of the game, an opportunity which was entirely of Boruc's making.
The keeper gathered a routine backpass from Sylvain Distin but, as he attempted to play it back to the defender Ighalo intercepted, skipped past Boruc and rolled the ball into an empty net.
Murray had the chance to nod Bournemouth back in front after the interval, this time from a Francis cross, but Gomes tipped his header over the top.
Moments later Watford almost took the lead, after Steve Cook hacked Ighalo's cross-shot clear.
From Almen Abdi's corner, the ball fell to Ben Watson whose fierce volley crashed back off the crossbar.
Boruc partly atoned for his error with a decent stop after Ikechi Anya burst through, while Gomes was called into action with a stunning save to keep out Cook's overhead kick.
It looked as though Bournemouth would snatch the win when Capoue tripped Adam Smith in the area, but Gomes had other ideas as he dived to his left to palm out Murray's penalty and preserve a point.
TWEET OF THE MATCH
"@Matt_Furniss: Of the 32 goalkeepers to have faced 20+ pens in the PL, Heurelho Gomes has the 2nd best save % (29%) after David Seaman (32%). #watfordfc" - Heurelho Gomes' penalty heroics shouldn't come as a surprise after looking at his superb record in the Premier League.
Artur Boruc 5
Simon Francis: 8
Steve Cook: 6
Sylvain Distin: 6
Charlie Daniels: 6
Mark Pugh: 6
Andrew Surman: 6
Dan Gosling: 6
Matt Ritchie: 7
Josh King: 6
Glenn Murray: 7
Adam Smith: 6
Eunan O'Kane: 6
Heurelho Gomes: 8
Allan Nyom: 6
Craig Cathcart: 6
Sebastian Podl: 5
Nathan Ake: 6
Ikechi Anya: 6
Ben Watson: 6
Almen Abdi: 7
Etienne Capoue: 6
Odion Ighalo: 7
Troy Deeney: 6
Victor Ibarbo: 6
Juan Carlos Paredes: 6
Adlene Guedioura: 5
Heurelho Gomes: Followed up a superb save from Steve Cook by keeping out Glenn Murray's penalty seven minutes from the end to preserve a point for Watford.
MOMENT OF THE MATCH
Steve Cook came up with an outrageous overhead kick from the edge of the box, but Gomes matched it by pulling off a stunning save.
VIEW FROM THE BENCH
Eddie Howe said his Bournemouth team would have to adapt without injured top scorer Callum Wilson and the signs were encouraging as Glenn Murray led the line well. Ighalo was too often isolated up front for Watford.
MOAN OF THE MATCH
Murray soured what had up to that point been an impressive afternoon's work with a nasty challenge on Etienne Capoue, seeking revenge after an off-the-ball clash moments earlier.
WHO'S UP NEXT?
Manchester City v Bournemouth (Barclays Premier League, Saturday October 17)
Watford v Arsenal (Barclays Premier League, Saturday October 17)