MX23RW : Tuesday, August 14 08:50:12

Result: Roberto Pereyra nets brace as Watford swat aside Brighton & Hove Albion

Watford beat Brighton 2-0 at Vicarage Road on the opening weekend of the Premier League season thanks to a couple of goals from Roberto Pereyra.

Roberto Pereyra scored either side of half time as Watford saw off Brighton & Hove Albion 2-0 in this afternoon's Premier League clash at Vicarage Road.

The former Juventus attacker added to his first-half wonder strike with a well-taken finish in the second to earn the Hornets all three points on the opening day.

Brighton, who were the lowest Premier League point earners on their travels last term, struggled to find a route back into the game and ended the contest without a single shot on target.

Watford players celebrate Roberto Pereyra's opening goal during their Premier League clash with Brighton on August 11, 2018© Reuters

Despite being one of the more active managers in the transfer window, Chris Hughton named just one debutant - left-back Bernardo - in his starting lineup.

Returning keeper Ben Foster was Watford's only new face from last season, meanwhile, and he almost had an assist to his name as a punt upfield was met by Andre Gray and smashed on target.

Watford slowly started to impose themselves on the game, with star man Pereyra skipping inside and having a shot blocked into the path of Troy Deeney, who could not beat Mathew Ryan in the Brighton goal.

Pereyra was wayward from the rebound but, after Dale Stephens came close with a controlled volley up the other end, the Argentine had a goal to celebrate with a first-time effort into the top corner.

Jose Holebas sent a looping cross to the edge of the box, where Pereyra was waiting to smash the ball home.

Brighton squandered a chance to level up before the interval when Glen Murray guided Pascal Gross's delivery just wide of the far post.

Watford defender Christian Kabasele was the next to come close, sending a bullet header over the bar when left unmarked, but the hosts did manage to double their lead nine minutes into the second period.

Holebas claimed another assist by playing the ball into Pereyra's path, and the winger bent it out of Ryan's reach after cutting onto his favoured right boot.

One positive for Hughton was the performance of Yves Bissouma, who exchanged passes with Solly March and curled a shot inches wide in a lively introduction to English football.

There was very little action in the final quarter of the match, however, with Albion offering very little in the final third, meaning a straightforward start to the season for Javi Gracia in the home dugout.

WATFORD (4-4-2): Foster; Holebas, Kabasele, Cathcart, Janmaat; Pereyra (Femenia 87'), Doucoure, Capoue, Hughes (Sema 81'); Deeney, Gray (Success 74')

BRIGHTON & HOVE ALBION (4-5-1): Ryan; Bruno (Bong 26'), Dunk, Duffy, Bernardo; Knockaert, Stephens, Propper, March (Jahanbakhsh 71'), Gross (Bissouma 60'), Murray

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August's Championship Manager of the Month, Chris Hughton of Brighton & Hove Albion
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