After a strong start to the 2016 season the Houston Dynamo headed to Vancouver looking to get their first road win of the season. Instead they would find themselves losing two games in a row after a difference making penalty call.
It was a quick start to the game as Vancouver had back to back to back chances around the 15 minute mark but thankfully for the Dynamo goal keeper Joe Willis was able to stop them all. The Dynamo had a tough time hanging on to the ball in the first half as each time they got the ball they seemed to immediately turn it over to Vancouver. The Dynamo defense was little help for Willis as the team was pressing high in an attempt to create more offense.
Jalil Anibaba was called for a very questionable penalty as Masato Kudo went down in the box. The Vancouver player didn't look like he had any chance reaching the cross that was headed his general direction but it didn't matter as the referee blew for a penalty anyways. Pedro Morales took the kick for Vancouver sending the ball to the right as Willis dove to the left. With the ball in the back of the net the Whitecaps were up 1-0 in the 23rd minute of the game.
It looked like the Dynamo might have a chance to level the game in the 30th minute as Andrew Wenger sent a great ball in to Leonel Miranda. Unfortunately, the ball went rifling off of the crossbar keeping the Dynamo off the score board. Vancouver continued to dominate on the ball and play a dangerous counter attack that the Dynamo were barely able to fend off. The Dynamo eventually seemed to find some footing as the Whitecaps cooled going into half time.
The second half got off to a much quieter start for both sides. During the second 45 minutes of the game the Dynamo were able to dominate possession of the ball, but weren't able to do much with it. In the 72nd minute Ricardo Clark came close to scoring but his shot went off the outside of the post. The Dynamo didn't put together too many more chances until stoppage time. Even then they were unable to find the back of the net as Manotas' freekick went right into the wall.
In the end the penalty goal was all that it took for the Whitecaps to take home three points and for Dynamo to return to Houston with zero points.
The Dynamo return to action on April 10 to play the Seattle Sounders at BBVA Compass Stadium.
The @GEICO Starting XI: Willis; Anibaba, Horst, Rodríguez, Beasley ©; Alex, Clark; Wenger, Maidana, Miranda, Bruin pic.twitter.com/ErRF1oDprS— Houston Dynamo (@HoustonDynamo) March 27, 2016
#VWFC Starting IX: Ousted; Aird, Jacobson, Kah, Harvey; Laba, Morales; Techera, Kudo, Manneh; Rivero pic.twitter.com/bD98aMKvSz— Vancouver Whitecaps (@WhitecapsFC) March 27, 2016
58'- Mansally on, Wenger off
64'- Manotas on, Maidana off
69'- Adekugbe on, Techera off
78'- Smith on, Kudo off
81'- Lovejoy on, Bruin off
86'- Manneh off, Mezquida on