The Houston Dynamo bounced back after Chicago took an early lead - even though they were down a goal - but Houston stayed in the game to earn their first road win of the year in their 3-2 win. Several players stepped up to help lead the team including Alberth Elis, Romell Quioto, Tomás Martínez, and Oscar Boniek García as they all played crucial roles in helping getting three points.
Quick Thoughts about the Game:
1) Consistency has been an issue for the Dynamo all year as they’ve been up and down in form game to game. On the road, the team has generally come out strong to get a lead only to see that lead evaporate often due to sitting too deep and letting opponents control the midfield. Getting a win like this will really improve the team’s confidence because they’ll know that they can go out and get a result on the road.
2) Romell Quioto and Alberth Elis are just so devastating to other teams when they’re given service and space. Quioto was at it early with Tomás Martínez supplying the Honduran with a beautiful long through ball. That’s all it takes for these two is a ball like that because they’re ready to blow passed defenders with their speed. Elis showed us this too when Boniek made a fantastic run through the midfield and was able to feed Elis a ball before Elis scored the game winner. These passes don’t always have to be accurate; they just can’t be to opponents or out of play.
3) Let’s look at some of the bad in this game with the goals conceded, because it looked like the Dynamo defense went to sleep at two very costly moments. The first goal showed both Adolfo Machado and Alejandro Fuenmayor not staying in front of their marks which led to Nemanja Nikolic beating Joe Willis. The second goal was really unfortunate. A poor headed clearance by DaMarcus Beasley (not much he could do on that one with the ball being too high for him to get much on it) led to more trouble for our center backs. Nikolic made a pass through Machado to a rushing Diego Campos who had no trouble getting passed Fuenmayor. The play almost looked like a pick and roll in basketball, except there wasn’t any pick. It was just too easy to get beat through the center like that. The defense needs to tighten up because this game, despite the better play by the Dynamo, could have been another draw or a loss because of a lack of focus marking.
4) Lastly, I want to touch on Wilmer’s tactics in this game. I think he made some smart decisions to manage this game to see the result come out. Usually, when the team gets a lead the game plan is to defend that lead by keeping more players back so they won’t be exposed on a breakaway. The problem is we often do that for entire halves which lets other teams get lots and lots of chances off. This time we got the lead in the 74th minute and a few minutes later Wilmer changed the formation to a 5 man back line while keeping his fast players up top to chase down any clearances. It appeared to have worked, at least this time. Defending deep for the final 10 minutes led to a few good chances by the Fire, but the defense wasn’t as fatigued because they weren’t defending that much for the entire half of the game. At the very least, it was nice to see Wilmer change his formation in game.