Tommy Conway had the best opportunity of the first half when he headed over from a Nahki Wells cross. Andi Weimann came closest to opening the scoring after the break, as his guided header was tipped behind by Daniel Bachmann.
The Hornets managed just one shot on the day and will be content with a point in the West Country. Nigel Pearson’s side move up to 18th, while Watford are promoted to fourth.
Story of the match
City’s start to the match couldn’t have been more different to their one in midweek, as they gave the visitors no time when in possession and were progressive on the ball.
It was Conway who had the first couple of chances of the match, both from passes from strike partner Wells, but the young striker couldn’t convert either. A quick counterattack on the 22-minute mark almost saw Conway slide through Wells, but his pass just evaded the Bermudan.
The Robins continued on the front foot and could’ve had a penalty on the half-hour mark. Jay Dasilva’s cross was headed down by Weimann to Wells, who seemed to get a head on the ball before Dan Gosling caught him in the face with a high boot, but David Webb said no spot kick.
City’s dominance began to take a toll on Ken Sema, who showed his frustration when he tripped Alex Scott off the ball, but somehow escaped punishment.
Pearson’s side controlled the match until the half but couldn’t force an opener.
The second period began in a less frantic fashion, as Slaven Bilic’s side began to get a foothold of the ball for the first time in the match.
It didn't take long for Watford to bring on their star men, as Joao Pedro and World Cup bound Ismaila Sarr were introduced before the 60-minute mark.
It was City, though, who had a golden opportunity to open the scoring after 66 minutes. Cameron Pring’s clearance turned into a perfect through ball for Conway, who ran through one on one with Daniel Bachmann, but the forward’s left-footed effort rolled agonisingly wide.
Pearson’s side came even closer to finding a breakthrough moments later, when Weimann’s accurate header was clawed behind brilliantly by the Austrian shot stopper.
Antoine Semenyo was then introduced as the hosts seeked a late goal, but there was little in the way of chances in the latter stages and it ended goalless on the day.
Max O’Leary – 7
Nothing to do in the match, but showed good distribution on the ball.
Zak Vyner – 8
Solid and aggressive in the challenge. Didn’t put a foot wrong at the back.
Andy King – 9
Defended strongly, organised his peers well and picked a few nice passes. Dealt with Kienan Davis with ease while playing out of position. Faultless performance.
Cameron Pring – 7
Allowed Ken Sema little time on the ball and was steady in possession. Sound display.
Andi Weimann – 7
Was much more involved than he has been of late, completed his defensive duties well and got forward throughout.
Alex Scott – 8
Busy off the ball and always showed quality on it – a typical display from the young talent. Got into wide areas well and moved the Hornets’ defence around. Booked.
Matty James – 7
Broke the play up well and was assured in possession. Controlled performance.
Joe Williams – 8
Kept the play moving and had some nice touches, brilliant pressing off the ball and was strong in the tackle. Was dominant in the middle of the park.
Jay Dasilva – 7
Good crosses and was always involved.
Nahki Wells – 7
Good movement and showed some quality touches, could’ve won a couple of spot kicks on another day.
Tommy Conway – 7
Lively. Missed a great chance from Wells’ cross 10 minutes in but was full of running and a constant threat in behind. Just lacked a little end product at times.
Antoine Semenyo (subbed on for Conway, 66’) – 6
Tried to get involved up front but to no avail.