AFC Bournemouth kept hold of top spot in the Sky Bet Championship with a 2-0 victory against Watford.
The Cherries returned to winning ways with goals in either half from Yann Kermorgant and Matt Ritchie.
Kermorgant converted from the penalty spot to put the home side ahead, while Ritchie’s terrific finish put daylight between the two teams approaching the hour mark.
However, the post-match debate centred round referee Lee Probert’s decision to dismiss Gabriele Angella for a professional foul in the first minute.
With the league’s top two scoring teams in town, the Sky Sports cameras were almost guaranteed plenty of drama and they didn’t have to wait long for the match’s first talking point.
Callum Wilson was played in and brought down by Angella 25 yards from goal, which prompted the referee to flash the red card after just 50 seconds.
The decision seemed harsh on the defender, who appeared to have a team-mate covering in behind.
But the Hornets didn’t sit back and Ikechi Anya dragged a lot shot wide either side of close range headers from Marc Pugh and Kermorgant.
The Cherries soon took control though and Kermorgant managed to get Charlie Daniels’ centre under control and smash the ball against the bar.
However, it was referee Probert who took centre stage once again, pointing to the spot in the 35th minute as Craig Cathcart brought down Wilson.
Kermorgant took responsibility and, despite missing from 12 yards out in the last league fixture at Leeds United ten days earlier, made no mistake with a thumping finish.
The home side began to make their one man advantage pay and Wilson went close before half-time with a glancing header which flashed wide of the far post, while Harry Arter tested the goalkeeper with a drive.
The second period started in the same fashion and Ritchie raced to the back post to meet a low cross and guide it back across the face of game to make it 2-0.
The winger’s eighth goal of the season seemed to deflate the Hornets and goalkeeper Hurelho Gomes was called upon twice to make saves to deny Ritchie and Kermorgant.
Cherries: Boruc, Francis, Elphick Cook, Daniels, Ritchie (Smith 87), Arter, Surman, Pugh, Kermorgant (O’Kane 77), Wilson (Pitman 90).
Unused substitutes: Camp, Ward, Stanislas, Fraser.
Booked: Cook, Arter, Elphick
Goals: Kermorgant (pen 35), Ritchie (57)
Watford: Gomes, Cathcart, Angella, Hoban, Layun, Munari (Pudil ht), Watson, Tozser, Anya, Deeney (Mensah 90), Ighalo (Vydra 68).
Unused substitutes: Bond, Doyley, Savic, Byers.
Sent off: Angella
Attendance: 10,904 (including 1,391 Watford supporters)