First things first, on Friday night in Portland the Dynamo had to take care of business and get three points against the Portland Timbers...and they did. It was a bit physical, borderline dirty even*, but a clever header deflection by Andre Hainault and a 40-yard wonder strike from Danny Cruz was enough to give Houston a 2-0 victory and the first piece of the final playoff spot puzzle.
The rest of the pieces fell in to place the next evening in dramatic fashion. A draw or loss by DC United would punch the Dynamo's playoff ticket and if you happened to be watching United's match against the Chicago Fire, you saw a hell of a show. After a Dwayne De Rosario PK but United up 1-0 in the 90th minute, the Fire scored twice in stoppage time to not only steal the three point, but guarantee Houston will be a part of the 2011 MLS Cup Playoffs.
If you missed it, enjoy the pertinent highlights!
After the tumult and stress of the past two seasons, getting back in the playoffs is a much needed relief for not only the team but fans as well. More than anything, it's a nice positive way to end the season and the Robertson Stadium era. Next year, no matter what happens in the playoffs, the Dynamo will open their new stadium on the back of their fifth playoff trip in six seasons in Houston.
*I'll discuss the Cruz/Chabala collision tomorrow in Monday Morning Centre Back