The Houston Dynamo extended their unbeaten run at BBVA Compass Stadium by shutting out an injured San Jose Earthquakes side. The Dynamo welcomed back its players that were out on international duty and put in a great team effort that defended well and created chances on goal.
Houston Dynamo Player Ratings:
Tally Hall (5.5) - The Houston goalkeeper was seldom challenged, but commanded his area and kept the defenders in front of him organized which earned him a shutout. Hall also thanked the woodwork for a 2nd week in a row after Chris Wondolowski nearly scored in the second minute of stoppage time.
Kofi Sarkodie (6.5) - Sarkodie was one reason San Jose struggled to gain any momentum going forward. HRH continues to impress with his 1v1 defending and spacing while making many of us say "Hainault who?" His distribution up the field and partnership with Boniek on the right side is really developing into something to fear for opposing teams.
Bobby Boswell (6.5) - Alls-well with Boswell - the man anchored the defense and helped shut down attacks by San Jose before they were threatening. His vision up the field led to great offensive build ups and he nearly found the net after an outstanding cross by Boniek.
Jermaine Taylor (6) - Fresh off Jamaican international duty, Jermaine Taylor quietly had a good game. He helped Boswell stop Golden Boot winner Chris Wondolowski from scoring with physical tight marking.
Corey Ashe (7.5) -Corey Ashe did it all on defense. His speed helped him chase down through balls and crosses, and beat opponents to the ball. Ashe was active on the offensive side of the ball as well, highlighted by his service to Will Bruin in the 21st minute which nearly had Bruin net his 2nd goal of the match.
Brad Davis (7) - The Dynamo skipper rejoined the team after playing with the USMNT against Mexico at Estadio Azteca. Davis's touch and comfort on the ball led to numerous chances for the Dynamo to find the net. Davis's assist to Giles Barnes was vintage Brad Davis and proved that there was nothing off about his service.
Adam Moffat (5.5) - Moffat helped patrol the central midfield through physical dispossession and service to the wings. On the defensive side of the ball, Moffat was typical Moffat, but offensively his service was below average which led to several turnovers in poor areas of the field.
Ricardo Clark (6.5) - Clark, like Moffat, prevented any offensive momentum from San Jose. Clark helped break up passes and dispossess those on the ball which led to extended periods of possession, especially in the first half of the match. Clark also helped Bruin score his first goal of the season by dummying Boniek's pass through his legs, and allowing Bruin to strike the net which paid off.
Oscar Boniek Garcia (7) - Boniek, coming off Honduran international duty, dominated the right side of the field. He regularly beat defenders on the dribble, and his passing was in peak form exemplified by his assist to Bruin, and his cross to Boswell.
Giles Barnes, MotM, (8) - The Englishman came out of the starting gates full throttle. He challenged San Jose's defenders early and often. Coming off a game in which he scored his first goal, Barnes looked more comfortable in passing the ball off to others rather than looking for the shot himself. Barnes helped provide the spark early that led to our attempts on goal and kept the ball on San Jose's side of the field in the first half of the match.
Will Bruin (7) - The Dancing Bear opened his scoring account this year with a clinical finish. Bruin took Boniek's pass and without hesitation one touched the ball past goalkeeper Jon Busch. Bruin continues to struggle finding space in this formation, but looked more comfortable than he did against Vancouver in part due to large stretches of possession in the middle and final thirds of the field and great service from Boniek, Davis, Ashe, and Barnes.
Brian Ching (6) - Ching came on for Giles Barnes in the 70th minute and complemented Bruin with his hold up play. Super-sub Ching continues to show that he can be an impact off the bench and most of that comes through his distribution to others, but one can't help wishing he would take a few more shots himself.
Andrew Driver (6.5) - Driver, welcome to Houston. The Englishman came on for Davis in the 77th minute, and helped rejuvenate a tiring Dynamo side. There is a lot to be excited about with Driver.
Cam Weaver (6.5) - Weaver and Ching work really well together. They both defend deep, and work to get the ball either to the other or out wide. Weaver came on in the 83rd minute for Will Bruin, and pushed for a goal late, but couldn't find the net.
Dominic Kinnear (7.5) - Dominic Kinnear worked his players coming back from international duty flawlessly, and earned a 2-0 shutout at home to extend our unbeaten streak to 34 matches, tying Real Salt Lake for longest home unbeaten run in all competitions. Kinnear's game plan last week was to disrupt play on the wings to prevent counter attacks from a very quick Vancouver side. This week he wanted to cut out passes in the middle and possess on San Jose's side of the field to create more chances on the offensive side of the ball which also paid off very well.