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Two-goal Deulofeu is Watford’s Cup hero in impressive fightback

Watford produced one of the great FA Cup comebacks by coming from two goals down to beat Wolverhampton Wanderers 3-2 after extra time of a memorable semi-final at Wembley Stadium on Sunday. Two-goal substitute Gerard Deulofeu proved Watford’s hero as they reached the FA Cup final for the first time in 35 years in astonishing fashion. The Spaniard scored a sensational individual goal to drag his side back into the match when they were 2-0 down with 11 minutes left and then slotted home the winner in the opening period of extra time.

Striker Troy Deeney also enhanced his folk hero status at Watford by nervelessly converting a penalty with the final kick of stoppage time in the 94th minute to enable the Hornets to take the game into extra time. A first-half header from Matt Doherty and a dazzling piece of skill which saw Mexican Raul Jimenez chest down and volley home acrobatically just after the hour had looked set to be enough for Wolves to prevail in the all-Premier League clash.

Yet an equally virtuoso 79th-minute goal from Deulofeu – a magnificently executed curling chip – set up the amazing finale which saw Deeney blast home from the spot after being brought down by Leander Dendoncker. Spanish international Deulofeu then delivered the killer blow a minute before the break of extra time, driving past Conor Coady on the right before slipping the ball across John Ruddy and into the net. It earned Watford a date with overwhelming favourites Manchester City, who beat Brighton & Hove Albion 1-0 in Saturday’s other semi-final, in the final back at Wembley on May 18. It also gave them the chance to play in only their second FA Cup final, after losing to Everton in 1984.

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