It was the best of halves, it was the worst of halves. Ultimately, this game will be judged upon the result and its effect upon playoff standings. The Houston Dynamo came back home after a smashing victory in El Salvador against CD FAS to face very inconsistent Toronto FC. The Dynamo had a 20 game unbeaten streak at the Cage, in the Oven, and they had every hope of continuing their home dominance. So just how did they actually do?
I'm going to actually assume you probably already know. The majority of the DT readers actually do watch the game, and look to this post-match recap as more of a "what did they see that I didn't" or a chance to place your points of view out there for others to read and see. While I could spend some time recapping the vast majority of the game, noting a few major things, I'd rather just summarize it as our very own Ordinary Orange Fan (Stephen E.) did so eloquently during the game's live blog.
I really lost track after the ninth or tenth chance went awry due to either a lack of finishing or execution. It was borderline abyssmal after the fourth or fifth time. The worst of it is you could almost see the confidence slipping away as Carr, Bruin and Kandji all combined repeatedly to get the ball into the box and then just falter once there. They weren't the only ones, but they were the standouts.
FINISH!!! Word of the day.
In retrospect, my true biggest concern is for the second straight game in a row, the backline got lax. In fact, this wasn't sloppy defending. This was atrocious defending. Three unmarked men in the box on a cross? No, scratch that. Three unmarked TFC players in the box in which the ENTIRE Dynamo backline had exited? Simply criminal defending. And it's going to bite us in the ass if we're not careful.
The East is tightening up as Columbus makes a push into the playoff picture. Higuain for them is the real deal, and he has brought them new life. He is their Boniek Garcia. So we really can't afford to be dropping points at home. It's unacceptable. Especially this late, for a club who traditionally surges at this point in the season.
So to recap, it's unfair to really call this a tale of two halves. It was more like a tale of 80 minutes and 10 minutes. For over 80 minutes we dominated possession, and the chances. We were up 1-0 with the end in sight. Maybe 6 minutes or so left to play. It was a gimme putt. Two feet from the hole. It was a sure thing.
Then it was the last 5 minutes, and the defense mentally left the game. They were thinking ahead, maybe. Or perhaps they were tired from the week. Either way, it lead to a pretty sad excuse for defending, and as a result, a TFC goal. And ultimately, another draw at home. Unacceptable.
Feel free to lambaste the team, the defending, whomever you wish in the comments!