With all of the excitement and emotions swirling around the recent news of Houston Dynamo head coach Dominic Kinnear's imminent departure and the "we're not going to be in the playoffs blues", it's easy to forget that there was a game to be played tonight against the 2nd place team in the Eastern Conference, the New England Revolution. In fact, it was Dominic Kinnear's final home game at BBVA Compass Stadium.
The opening minutes saw each side feel each other out as both teams exchanged corner kicks and possession changes. In the 9th minute, fans held up signs that read #ThanksDom as a tribute to Dominic Kinnear honoring his 9 years in Houston.
The New England Revolution got their first serious look on goal in the 11th minute as AJ Cochran poorly cleared the ball right into Steve Neumann who found Patrick Mullins who sent in a dangerous shot or cross (you be the judge) across the mouth of goal. Fortunately for the Dynamo, there was no one to reach the end of it.
As the game continued, the Revolution began to gain control of the game. The Dynamo played poor balls back that were easily intercepted and their attacks often ran into a navy blue wall of Revolution defenders.
In the 23rd minute Luis Garrido was whistled for a vicious challenge on Lee Nguyen as Garrido turned to get a ball and sent a deliberate elbow into the neck of Nguyen. Garrido was lucky to escape with only a talking to, but he likely won't escape the disciplinary committee.
In the 36th minute the Dynamo generated a dangerous chance of their own as Jermaine Taylor made a run all the way through the 6 yard box and tried to find Omar Cummings in front of the goal, but his passes was pushed out by New England goalkeeper Bobby Shuttleworth. The Dynamo would get their goal just a minute later as Omar Cummings controlled a long ball and sent in a hard shot that was saved by Shuttleworth, but Giles Barnes collected the ball and buried it in the corner of the goal putting the home side up 1-0 which they would hold going into half time.
Early into the second half, Jermaine Taylor was booked for a challenge on Revolution defender Andrew Farrell. Taylor looked to have nicked Farrell's ankle going in for the ball, but Farrell was forced to make an early exit from the game. A few minutes later in the 52nd minute, Luis Garrido would also see a yellow card for a silly challenge on Lee Nguyen.
In the 59th minute, Omar Cummings controlled a ball and did well to hold it and then find an open Andrew Driver. Driver took his time over the ball and sent in a very good shot that took a deflection and nearly curled its way into the net. Just two minutes later, Revolution substitute Charlie Davies took advantage of a ball in the box as he controlled it with his chest, but his shot was off the mark.
The Dynamo had looked improved coming out after half-time, but the Revolution found a way back into the game. In the 65th minute Kevin Alston played a perfect ball to Lee Nguyen who was unmarked and then dodged a sliding challenge by Jermaine Taylor. Nguyen then calmly let the ball fly passed a frozen Tyler Deric to equalize the game 1-1.
In the 85th minute, Boniek Garcia gave up a poor foul just outside of the corner of the 18 yard box. Tyler Deric was able to punch the effort away, but the Dynamo failed to clear the ball from danger. Lee Nguyen was able to finish the ball close despite Deric getting a hand on it putting the visitors up 2-1.
The final whistle blew and Dominic Kinnear wasn't able to finish his last game in Houston with a win. The team adjusted after a rough first half and looked to control the game a bit more. New England subbed its stars on and the Dynamo had trouble clearing the ball in dangerous areas. The Dynamo play their final game of the season in Chicago on the 24th.