Head Coach Valérien Ismaël made three changes from the side that lost 1-0 to Stoke City last time out, as Jake Livermore, Imrân Louza and James Morris made way for Ismaël Koné, Edo Kayembe and Yáser Asprilla. New signing Rajović was named on the substitutes bench for his first game in Watford colours under the watchful eye of the Sky Sports cameras.
Before the encounter got underway, Vicarage Road stood together for a minute’s applause following the passing of former Watford goalkeeper Andy Rankin earlier this week.
It was a busy opening period for both sides as Watford and Blackburn looked to gain an early foothold in the match. Wesley Hoedt and Martins came closest to testing the Rovers’ goalkeeper, while Blackburn regularly got into dangerous positions.
The travelling side’s best chance in the early stages fell to Sammie Szmodics, who broke through past Ryan Porteous before firing a powerful effort at skipper Bachmann. The Hornets replied with their best opening moments later, as Martins forced Pears into a diving save low to his left-hand side.