The Hornets created very little in the 90 minutes, threatening only from set pieces, as the hosts bounced back from a 5-0 thrashing at Manchester City on Monday.
Burnley were clearly the better side and were eventually rewarded in the second half when Jay Rodriguez, Burnley’s key man, glanced a header in at the near post. It was reward for Rodriguez, who also saw a shot cleared off the line by Craig Dawson in the first half.
While the win takes Burnley over the 40-point threshold and leaves them with a great chance of finishing the season in the top half, Nigel Pearson’s side now have just one league win in nine and are sliding back towards the bottom three.
Do Watford have enough to stay up? On this evidence, no. While they were fairly solid at the back, they look painfully short on inspiration in midfield. Will Hughes was nullified, Tom Cleverly invisible, and Troy Deeney was isolated as a result. Watford still have to play three of the current top four and sit just a point clear of 19th place. This performance was cause for concern.
Watford's English striker Danny Welbeck (L) fights for the ball with Burnley's English midfielder Dwight McNeil during the English Premier League football match between Burnley and and Watford at Turf Moor
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MAN OF THE MATCH
Jay Rodriguez (Burnley) Capped a fine performance with the only goal of the game, which he took very well. Showed good movement, linked well with Vydra throughout and saw a shot cleared off the line. The match winner, but will feel he could have had at least another one.
Burnley: Pope 7, Lowton 7, Tarkowski 7, Mee 7, Taylor 8, Brownhill 7, Cork 7, Westwood 7, McNeil 7, Rodriguez 8,, Vydra 7. Subs: Pieters n/a
21’ Off the post, off the line! Double chance for Burnley as Vydra lifts the ball over Foster, who was in no-man's-land, and it hits the outside of the post. It comes out to Rodriguez, who thumps it at goal from the edge of the box - but Dawson had retreated to clear off the line.
73’ GOAL! Burnley 1-0 Watford - Rodriguez scores! The breakthrough has come courtesy of Rodriguez, who is picked out by Taylor's cross from the left, and glances the ball in under the body of Foster.
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Only Crystal Palace have scored fewer first half goals (10) than Burnley this season.
Burnley's Nick Pope has now kept 12 clean sheets in 31 Premier League games this season. No goalkeeper has kept more.
Watford have just one league win in their last nine. That came against Liverpool.
Burnley have 12 points from their last 6 games and are unbeaten in their last four home matches.
Jay Rodriguez now has 6 league goals this season, just short of his tally of 7 last campaign.