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Three takeaways from Houston Dynamo's loss to NYRB

In what turned out to be a defense-less goal-fest, the Dynamo came away with zero points despite multiple leads.

William Hauser-USA TODAY Sports

1. The Houston Dynamo can score goals

11 goals in three matches. 11 goals! That's a lot of goals, and it's the number the Houston Dynamo have scored this season, best in the league by a wide margin.

You can make the point that some came from crucial defensive lapses on the part of FC Dallas and the New York Red Bulls–as a matter of fact, it's a valid one–but the truth of the matter is that the Dynamo have consistently put heavy pressure on backlines and have found a recipe for goal-scoring in MLS. They won't be able to keep this rate of scoring up, but they have at least shown an ability to get out on the front foot and put the ball in the net.

There was concern that they would struggle to do that in New Jersey without Giles Barnes and Cristian Maidana, but Boniek Garcia stepped in and made things happen in midfield while Will Bruin picked up the load at striker. Sure, it helped to have both Red Bull center-backs go down with hamstring injuries, but when guys like Garcia and Bruin are playing the way they are, the Dynamo have to be given credit for their offensive success.

2. The defense could use some work

There isn't necessarily a glaring hole in the backline–honestly, it has performed fairly well thus far–but when it gives up four goals to a team that hadn't scored in the prior two games, there are problems.

Part of it came down to defensive organization–stepping up at inopportune times or sitting too deep in the box–but other times, it was defending crosses and set pieces that really hurt the Dynamo. Emergency defending is an under-appreciated skill, and it's something that Houston did poorly at Red Bull Arena.

For instance, the Red Bulls' second goal, scored by Mike Grella, came when a nervy Ricardo Clark passed the ball backwards a yard or two in his own six yard box to a helpless David Horst, whose one-time clearance bounced off Grella and into the net to tie the game at two. Why Clark didn't clear the ball on the spot, I'm not particularly sure. Whatever the reason, these kind of mishaps can't happen, and they are part of the reason why four goals were put past Joe Willis.

3. Will Bruin is really good

Bruin isn't really thought of as the most skillful player. He has a great work rate and is a threatening presence in the box, but when compared to the hold-up play of Fanendo Adi or the heading ability of Kei Kamara or the finishing of Cyle Larin, he is put on the back burner. That's why he hasn't made any appearances in competitive matches with the USMNT.

Maybe his status should be elevated after he scored two more goals against New York.

The St. Louis-native showed his finishing ability with an eloquent chip over Luis Robles on his first goal then found the ball in the box after Ronald Zubar made a mistake and capitalized on the golden opportunity, getting rewarded for his impressive movement and distribution from his number-nine position. Bruin looked like one of the best players on the field, and it was a questionable decision from Owen Coyle to remove him from the game in the 78th-minute.

When he was on the field, though, he was very, very good. It was a disappointing loss for the Dynamo, but they can take solace in the fact that Bruin and the attack have dominated thus far.