Let there be life!
The Dynamo aren't done yet in the 2014 MLS season, and they might have been without three points tonight against DCU. Current Dynamo scenario: five points behind Columbus and six points behind NYRB for the fourth and fifth playoff spots. If we had lost tonight: eight and nine points out and sitting clear at ninth place in the Eastern Conference. If the Dynamo hadn't pulled out a result tonight, I was ready to bring out the tombstone on the 2014 Dynamo campaign for this recap article. Fortunately, DCU and Eddie Johnson were their normal let downs against the Dynamo, so let's get to the game recap!
The Dynamo started out on fire and managed to do everything right but put the ball past Bill Hamid and into the net. Bruin had two great headed chances in the first 30 minutes that were both mere inches from going in. One went off of the crossbar while a second was saved by Hamid over the bar. Taylor Kemp was starting at LB for DCU and was Dom Kinnear's target by working the left side for most of the night. Kofi Sarkodie made several great overlapping runs and really pressured the DCU defense into giving up many crosses and many shots. The Dynamo out-shot DCU thirteen to two in the first half, but a goal eluded the Dynamo.
Both Luis Garrido and DaMarcus Beasley made their debuts in orange and both played extremely well. DMB's speed was remarkable and Dynamo fans got a taste of veteran-quality ball handling skills. There were shades of what we have gotten to enjoy Brad Davis doing for years, and it made it very clear to me how much of an upgrade DMB is over Corey Ashe. With expansion drafts looming in the off-season, I think Ashe's days in orange are numbered. Clearly the additions of Garrido and Beasley have jump-started the Dynamo already (see picture below).
Garrido played a very hard-nosed defensive midfielder that was sure to please Kinnear. No major mistakes and strong challenges equal DCU having very limited chances. Garrido's handling skills were excellent as well while his shot at goal left a little to be desired. Can't have it all on your first night unfortunately. There's a certain silky-smoothness that the World Cup players have that shows clearly on the field, and makes it quite apparent how much of an upgrade they are.
The second half didn't show nearly as much dominance for the Dynamo although they still out-shot DCU eight to five. Giles Barnes gets my unsung hero of the game award, as he made it hell on the DCU defense to keep him covered which led to a few of the Will Bruin chances.
After sweating out the end of the first 90 minutes, an unfortunate series of events between the DCU backline and Bill Hamid with a hearty helping of pressure from Will Bruin resulted in a stoppage time winner for the Dynamo. DCU has been vanquished again in Houston, and now have zero wins, one tie, and eight losses. Bruin scored his eighth regular season goal against DCU in his career as well.
The Dynamo have a rough August ahead of them with away games at Seattle, Columbus and Kansas City, with a single home game against Philadelphia. We need some serious points, and they clearly will probably come from the Crew and the Union. With such a complete team performance tonight though, the teams in front of us in the standings have started getting beads of sweat on their brows, as the 'Hunt for October' looks to be a tough fight and the Dynamo are back in it.
Additional note: Eddie Johnson had only two shots with one on target and no goals. Going to be difficult to talk trash online tonight Eddie!