UNDER-23 REPORT: Watford 3-0 Millwall

THE HORNETS secured an impressive 3-0 victory over Millwall this afternoon in an Under-23 pre-season friendly played at UCL.

Goals from Matej Vydra, Alex Jakubiak and Ogo Obi secured the victory for Harry Kewell’s side, with the Hornets also going close through defenders Tommie Hoban and Charlie Rowan, who both hit the post.

In a useful outing, Kewell was able to give valuable playing time to first-team players Hoban, Vydra and new summer recruit Juan Camilo Zuniga. 

Both sides started the friendly encounter with positive intentions, with plenty of chances arriving early on at both ends.

Dion Pereira was heavily involved early on, linking up well with Jakubiak, but the latter’s effort flew narrowly over the Millwall cross-bar. 

At the other end, Rene Gilmartin also had to be alert, saving twice in quick succession to keep the scores level.  

The opening goal of the game arrived in the 35th minute after an excellent team move beginning with Pereira, who picked the ball up on the Millwall left before skipping past three challenges and driving towards the opposition penalty-area. The second-year scholar then found Jakubiak, who slipped in Vydra with a perfectly weighted through ball. With just the opposition keeper to beat, the Czech striker made no mistake, firing into the bottom corner to give the Hornets a deserved lead.

Watford doubled their lead five minutes later, with summer signing Zúñiga turning provider. The Colombian international reached the Millwall byline before dinking a ball to the back post, where Jakubiak was lurking to power a header into the back of the net. 

The second-half started in a similar fashion to the end of the first, with Pereira causing problems for the Millwall defence. First his free-kick found Hoban, whose header rebounded off the post, before a low cross after a surging run somehow evaded everyone in the opposition six-yard box. 

In an impressive attacking performance, Rowan was next to go close with a header which glanced off the outside of the post. 

But it wasn’t long before the third goal arrived, with second-half substitute Obi tapping in from close-range after good work from Vydra.

HORNETS: Gilmartin (GK) (Bannister, 45, GK); Eleftheriou, Hoban, Rowan, Zúñiga; Pereira (Obi, 70), Charles, Ryan (Stewart, 70), Trialist (Johnson, 70); Vydra, Jakubiak (Adeyemo, 60).

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