Still waiting for the time that a Dynamo game produces more than two goals.
Cristian Maidana got the start in central midfield against the Montreal Impact, and he was very good. He drifted all over the field, got the ball on his feet consistently, and he created a number of big chances that the Houston Dynamo could have, and should have, finished. Maidana was the focal point of the Dynamo attack.
The Argentine finished with 98 touches, more than anyone else on the field, and he completed 67 of his 77 total completed passes in the attacking half. He ranged all over the pitch and played like Nicolas Lodeiro has for the Sounders.
Here's a map of his passes in the attacking half:
Dark blue arrows are completed passes, red are incomplete, and light blue are chances created. He was nothing if not active.
His efficiency could get better, and he could be a little more incisive and central with his passing. But the fact that he even was able to do this much in the final third is new for the Dynamo this season, and something they have sorely missed.
Maidana played like the true No. 10 he is touted as. The next step is for the front office to get players who can take advantage of what he brings.
The last time the Dynamo had as many clear cut opportunities to score in a single game that they did in Montreal was probably April. They finished with 10 shots, five on-target, and spent more time in the final third than they have in a long time. But they weren't able to find the back of the net, and that, more than anything else, will be the reason that they lost.
Finishing hasn't exactly been a strength for the Dynamo this season — really, what has? — but it hasn't been a serious issue. The bigger problem has been chance-creation, and the ability to get in positions to score. They're not used to getting opportunities on net, so when they did, they faltered.
This has to be pointed out: Houston's backline has been absolutely stellar of late, and it is the reason that the Dynamo aren't in 20th-place right now. Maybe their distribution isn't world-class, and they have a tendency to be a little careless with the ball, but for the most part, they've been organized, compact, and tough to break down.
Despite a recent barrage of injuries, the defense has continued to allow less than two goals per game. Not all is gloom and doom in Dynamo-land.