Friday 21 October 2016

Artur Boruc's howler deprives Bournemouth of victory over Watford

Andy Sims

Published 03/10/2015 | 17:37

Players tussle for the ball during the Barclays Premier League match between A.F.C. Bournemouth and Watford at Vitality Stadium
Players tussle for the ball during the Barclays Premier League match between A.F.C. Bournemouth and Watford at Vitality Stadium

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.

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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.

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