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Player Ratings: Dynamo vs Sounders

The Houston Dynamo were downed 2-0 by the Seattle Sounders as poor field conditions, defensive meltdowns, and a missed penalty kick by the Dynamo were enough to continue the team’s poor road form.

Steven Bisig-USA TODAY Sports

5 Quick Thoughts:

1)    Insert Seattle turf joke here (any will do), but seriously the field had a huge impact on the game.

2)    Clark and Garrido in central midfield is still a work in progress, but it's still very good.

3)    Defensive errors return, but there's still promise there. Seattle isn't easy to play in (after all, you have to play on a mud racing "field"). The defense did well, but a poorly timed clearance and a silly foul were enough.

4)    The forwards were really good, but where'd they go? Barnes and Bruin (and even JJ early into his appearance) started their games strong, but then disappeared.

5)    We don't need any more injuries - let's hope that Bruin is okay and that Clark doesn't see any concussion symptoms resurface.

Houston Dynamo Player Ratings:

Tally Hall (5.5) - Hall had little to do for much of the game, but managed to collect two saves and keep things out of his area for much of the game. Hall can hardly be blamed for the first goal, which was deflected off of David Horst, and I can't ever blame keepers on penalty kicks (unless they committed the foul that led to the kick from the spot which was not the case this time).

Kofi Sarkodie (6) - Sarkodie was very active with Boniek up the right side and helped win free kicks by earning corner kicks and by suffering fouls in dangerous areas. Defensively he could have been sharper and covered his man better at times, but overall was pretty solid in the back.

David Horst (5.5) - For most of the game Horst proved to be a handful for Obafemi Martins and Clint Dempsey. Horst's physical style of defense was noticeably frustrating for both players, but unfortunately for Houston the defensive meltdowns that have become a theme this year came through David Horst. First his failed clearance on a ball (which looks like he swung and missed really) led to the game's first goal. Horst almost let Martins on the scoreboard as well following a mistimed clearing header that he missed. Fortunately Hall was there to make it difficult for Martins and Horst was there to keep the slow shot from going over the line.

Jermaine Taylor (5) - Even though the more noticeable defensive errors came through Horst, Taylor was often caught out of position when Seattle had the ball. Taylor also really struggled with his movements in this game, which (of course) are likely a result of the poor field conditions.

DaMarcus Beasley (6) - DMB had a relatively quiet evening, but he did just about everything right when he was called upon. He covered ground defensively by making things difficult for the Seattle attack and was able to link with Brad Davis moving up the field.

Luis Garrido, MotM, (6.5) - The central midfield battle pretty much looked like Garrido vs Alonso and that was very entertaining. For much of the game Garrido was winning that battle (and many others as well). His ability to force difficult passes, intercept passes, and take people off the ball is a bright spot of this game. His yellow card challenge, while maybe a little harsh, seemed warranted as his sliding tackle came a little late and he basically knocked someone down with his thigh.

Ricardo Clark (6) - Clark and Garrido's partnership is one to watch the rest of the year. Clark was very good at timing his runs up the field and getting back to help police the central midfield. However, at times he pushed up too high and couldn't get back to help defend. Clark was also getting knocked around a lot and may have decided to retaliate a bit of his own by trying to hold onto Obafemi Martins on the free kick that led to the penalty kick. It was a poor decision by him in an otherwise good game.

Oscar Boniek Garcia (6.5) - I've heard different takes on Boniek's performance, but I personally feel Boniek was one of the best players for the Dynamo. He practically carried the team towards the end of the game, but often took too many touches.

Brad Davis (6) - The game could have been completely different had Davis hit his penalty kick. I am not a fan of the stutter step, and players with the gift of amazing service don't need to use it (no more Brad, you're better than it). Apart from the poor penalty, Davis's service was superb as he sent in great dead and live balls into the box that nearly found their way into the net.

Giles Barnes (6)
- Barnes opened the game energized and ready to go as his shots and service both seemed up to his highest standard. Still, when Bruin left the game Barnes's performance drifted off as he saw less and less of the ball. He can't be blamed for the forwards seeing less of the ball, but the effort to drop back into the midfield and become more involved just wasn't there.

Will Bruin (5.5) - I am still a little puzzled about what happened to start the 2nd half of the game. Bruin was set to play and then he came off - presumably due to an injury that Kinnear didn't want to make worse. For only playing 45 minutes of the game, Bruin still had more shots than any other Dynamo (though none were on target). Bruin was very active early in the game, but as Seattle found ways to dictate the middle of the field towards the end of the first half, Bruin saw fewer opportunities.

The Subs:

Jason Johnson (4.5)
- JJ came on for Bruin to start the 2nd half (or to be more accurate, a few seconds after the 2nd half began) and was very creative early. He found pockets of space and his passing was better than I had ever seen it. After that 5-10 minutes, I can't be sure he touched the ball again (okay he did, but it wasn't anything like how he started the game).

Brian Ownby (5) - Ownby came on for Clark and looked to add a bit of pace and attacking edge to the game and while he did deliver some of that, the Dynamo simply didn't control the ball long enough for him to become a factor.

Andrew Driver (5) - Driver came on for Horst in the final push to ruin Seattle's chance at a shutout and while some of Driver's crosses and passes were great, it just wasn't enough.

Coach Dominic Kinnear (5.5)
- 5.5 may seem a little harsh given that the Dynamo actually played fairly well in this game. The team controlled things for most of the first half and even when Seattle pressured, the defense usually held up. Defensive errors came back though and forward production was just not there. If this team wants make the playoffs at all, they have to start getting results on the road. It isn't easy in Seattle, but based off of how each team played, this game could've seen a point for the visitors, and stealing three was doable.