It's been a tough season for the Houston Dynamo. Inconsistent results, the Koke mess, there's been plenty of reasons this team could have closed up shop and looked ahead to 2012. Instead the Dynamo have continued to fight and claw and while they are far from perfect, you get the feeling that things are starting to come together at just the right time.
Nobody has any illusions about the 2011 Dynamo hoisting the MLS Cup (though in the playoffs anything is possible) but just getting back in the playoffs would be a tremendously important step towards rebuilding the confidence of both the team and the fans. That important, because everyone involved with this franchise wants this season to be as successful as possible to help build momentum moving in to the the new stadium next season.
Saturday night's dramatic victory over Real Salt Lake was one of those moments that make great foundations for season highlight videos. A 21-year old rookie making only his 7th professional appearance scores a beautiful goal in the 93rd minute to get his team a much needed three points. Hollywood couldn't have written it any better and for Alex Dixon, it's hopefully the first of many great moments in his young career.
"Last-minute game-winner, and we got the three points, so there are just a lot of emotions going around." Dixon said. "I'm happy for the team, mostly, as we make a run for the playoffs, it's a good three points."
Dominic Kinnear was happy for his young player as well.
"I was happy for him. The kid has talent; we all know that." Kinnear said after the match. "He has played important minutes for us. We brought him into the game in an important time on Wednesday. I'm happy he came over and celebrated with everyone, it was nice to see."
Bottom line is the Dynamo needed the three points and more importantly, I think they needed this moment to help solidify their confidence as they face a challenging stretch of matches that will determine their playoff fate.
Houston hits the road for the first of three straight league away matches for their first trip to Vancouver to face the Whitecaps.