Match: Aston Villa v Watford
Date: July 29, 2017
Competition: Graham Taylor tribute matchday
Venue: Villa Park
Weather: 18c, cloudy
Villa and Watford played out a goalless draw at Villa Park on the day the two clubs paid tribute to the late, great Graham Taylor.
The former Hornets and Villa manager would have been pleased with the defensive resilience displayed by both teams, although maybe less happy with the lack of scoring opportunities at both ends.
Even a penalty failed to bring a breakthrough. Alan Hutton was brought down by Younes Kaboul in the 53rd minute but Henri Lansbury – on target three times from the spot in previous friendlies – saw his kick saved by Heurelo Gomes.
Chances were few and far between during a low-key opening half.
Gabriel Agbonlahor raced clear in the second minute, only for his drive to be charged down by Gomes and on 16 minutes Jermone Sinclair squandered a glorious chance for the visitors when he fired well wide with only Jed Steer to beat.
It was a similar story after the interval, although Jed Steer did well to a close-range effort from sub Isaac Success after Lansbury’s penalty miss.
Subs Jordan Amavi and Conor Hourihane also went close for Villa, but a draw was just about right in the final warm-up game before Steve Bruce takes his side into Championship action.
VILLA: Steer; Hutton, Chester, Terry (Samba 74), Taylor; Elmohamady (Bree 74), Whelan (Hourihane 74), Lansbury (Amavi 74), Grealish (Bacuna 26), Green (Bjarnason 69); Agbonlahor (Hogan 54). Unused sub: Bunn.
WATFORD: Gomes (Pantilimon 60); Cathcart, Kabasele (Prodl 9), Kaboul, Mason; Amrabat (Femenia 60), Cleverley (Hughes 60), Doucore (Watson 60), Chalobah, Pereyra (Success HT); Sinclair (Okaka 60).Unused sub: Rowan.
Referee: Oliver Langford
Assistant Referee 1: Danny Gratton
Assistant referee 2: Craig Taylor
Fourth Official: Ben Watkiss