WE CAN STAY UP, SAYS FERGIE

PETER­BORO’....3 WATFORD ........2

The Football League Paper - - CHAMPIONSHIP - By John Brind­ley

DAR­REN FER­GU­SON called on Posh to bring sur­vival home af­ter rid­ing out a last-gasp fright in this thrilling vic­tory over 10man Watford.

Late goals from Mark Yeates and Fer­nando Forestieri nearly un­hinged a Dwight Gaylein­spired Peter­bor­ough who had threat­ened to blow them apart.

And now Fer­gu­son in­sists he is look­ing up­wards; not at the foot of the ta­ble.

“I told the lads be­fore­hand if we win our last three home games, 56 points will surely be enough,” he said.

“For 70 min­utes we were out­stand­ing but the at­mos­phere in the dress­ing room wasn’t what it should have been. We have got to learn from those last 15 min­utes in our last four games. We stopped do­ing what had put us three goals up. That spell seemed like an eternity.

“Danny Swan­son has shown what a good player he is af­ter his in­jury-hit sea­son and we knew Dwight Gayle would cause them prob­lems with his pace on the counter at­tack in the sec­ond half.

“For most of the game we were really good against the best foot­balling side in this di­vi­sion.”

Light­en­ing-fast Gayle was a fea­ture in all three goals and all but lured both his mark­ers into early baths.

Gayle fired his open­ing salvo af­ter just four min­utes, rac­ing clear of Joel Ek­strand be­fore shoot­ing a few inches the wrong side of Manuel Alum­nia’s left-hand post. Just four min­utes later the same Watford de­fender was booked by David Webb for slic­ing down Gayle heav­ily by the touch­line.

The pat­tern be­came clear; Watford prob­ing with de­light­ful first time pass­ing and Ikechi Anya and Fer­nando Forestieri prom­i­nent only to be hit by ra­zor-sharp Posh on the break.

Silky Nathaniel Chalobah went close with a skil­ful 25-yard vol­ley but it was Posh who fash­ioned a 29th minute break­through. Gayle paved the way with a neat pass and Danny Swan­son kept his cool ad­mirably to side foot be­yond Alum­nia. The half time dam­age could have been greater for Gian­franco Zola’s men had Mr Webb shown a de­served red to Ek­strand for an­other foul on Gayle just be­fore the break.

Watford were un­done again by Gayle’s pace on the hour as he won the ball back from Marco Cas­setti. Lee Tom­lin took over be­fore in­tel­li­gently pick­ing out Gayle to sweep the ball home.

Cas­setti saw red as he pre­vented Gayle from cap­i­tal­is­ing on Grant McCann’s rak­ing pass and pun­ish­ment was dou­bled by Tom­lin’s ex­quis­ite 25-yard free kick.

Fergie could af­ford to re­place goalscor­ers Swan­son and the cau­tioned Tom­lin and Watford had been re­duced from riches to rags. But a de­flected free kick from Mark Yeates pulled one back with five min­utes left and Forestieri added to the Posh boss’ ob­vi­ous dis­com­fort af­ter four of five added min­utes.

Watford boss Zola said: “We were play­ing OK but made silly mis­takes.

“We were con­trol­ling the game and build­ing mo­men­tum and it was a stupid mis­take that did my brain in a lot. A lot for the sec­ond goal as well. That killed us off and made me crazy

“Troy Deeney should have had at least one penalty. I can com­plain about the mis­takes but not the at­ti­tude which was in­cred­i­ble.We scored two with 10 men and with a lit­tle longer may have got a draw.

“I had to take Ek­strand off as he’d been booked and had a warn­ing. I don’t be­lieve Marco (Cas­setti) meant to foul and hope it will be only a one­match ban.”

PIC­TURES: Ac­tion Im­ages

WALL GAME: Lee Tom­lin scores the third goal for Peter­bor­ough

HANG ON: Watford’s Marco Cas­setti is shown a red card

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