Bournemouth couldn’t find its finish in a dangerous second half, but the Cherries improved their standing to five points clear of the drop in a 0-0 draw at Vicarage Road on Saturday.
Odion Ighalo was a constant threat for the hosting Hornets, but was just off in his finishing.
Watford drops to 10th, a point ahead of Chelsea and six behind fifth place West Ham United.
[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]
There wasn’t much offensive electricity in a scrappy first half, though Ighalo did his best to provide what few chances did arrive at Vicarage Road.
Bournemouth lost valuable attacker Junior Stanislas to an injury in the 23rd minute.
[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings ]
— AFC Bournemouth (@afcbournemouth) February 27, 2016
[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]
Max Gradel and Andrew Surman teamed up for good-looking series of passes inside the 18, but the ball was cleared just as Gradel brought his leg back to strike at goal.
Then Nordin Amrabat carried around the right to cut back a hard, high pass for Ighalo, but the Watford attacker couldn’t control his header and it went over the bar.
At the other end Dan Gosling missed a prime chance, and then Gradel’s grounded header lost its momentum on the way to Gomes.
It finished level which, given Ighalo’s misses and Bournemouth’s momentum, was probably fair.