After a disappointing blowout loss in Portland, the Houston Dynamo went back out to the west coast to hope for a better result in San Jose. Unfortunately, the confines of Avaya Stadium weren’t much kinder to the men in orange as the Dynamo lost yet another road contest, this time 2-0.
The game started out fairly physical with neither team really getting an offensive advantage until the 23rd minute when Valeri “Vako” Qazaishvili dazzled with a back heel goal in the box in the middle of four defenders.
Porous defense by the Dynamo in that goal but credit to Vako for one of the best goals you’ll see.
The rest of the first half remained mundane as neither the Quakes nor Dynamo were able to get another opportunity on goal. San Jose had controlled the entire half however, owning 64% of the possession battle but only had one goal to show for it.
In the second half, Dynamo tried to increase the offensive production by subbing Mauro Manotas into the game, but the ball struggled to make its way to him and Houston struggled to keep the San Jose attack at bay. In the 58th minute, Magnus Eriksson almost got a goal himself with a strike from inside the box that barely missed wide right. Right after, in the 62nd minute, Vako launched a cross right onto the head of former Dynamo Chris Wondolowski that seemed to be a sure thing, until Joe Willis happened.
Willis, once again, kept the Dynamo in the game as best he could throughout as he finished the game with four saves including that beauty.
The Earthquake attack kept coming as Eriksson dropped another great pass into the box for Marcos Lopez to launch a shot that went over the crossbar. Finally in the 75th minute, San Jose increased their lead with a flurry of good passes that lead to Vako getting the ball, dribbling around the defense and striking the ball off of his right foot right inside the near post.
Immediately after, Vako once again attacked the Dynamo backline dazzling the home crowd and taking on four Dynamo defenders and still getting into the box and attempting a shot that was blocked away by Willis. The Quakes kept attacking for the remainder of the game despite being up 2-0, but the Dynamo were able to stop the bleeding a keep it a two score deficit.
The men in orange must fix their road woes soon as they are set to travel to Foxborough, Massachusetts to take on the Revolution this Saturday. Luckily, they should be getting some reinforcements back as Honduras and El Salvador have both been eliminated in the Gold Cup allowing key players like Alberth Elis and Maynor Figueroa available to play soon. Whether we see the Dynamo players active for that game or later, the key is that they’ll be active soon and it is much needed.
23’ SJ: Valeri Qazaishvili (Assisted by Magnus Eriksson and Cristian Espinoza)
75’ SJ: Valeri Qazaishvili
17’ HOU: Ronaldo Pena (yellow card)
57’ HOU: A.J. DeLaGarza (yellow card)
77’ SJ: Guram Kashia (yellow card)
93’ HOU: Tommy McNamara (yellow card)
Houston Dynamo (4-1-4-1): Joe Willis; Adam Lundkvist, Kevin Garcia, Kiki Struna A.J. DeLaGarza; Juan Davis Cabezas; Oscar Boniek García, Matías Vera (73’ Michael Salazar), Tomás Martínez (64’ Romell Quioto), Tommy McNamara, Ronaldo Peña (45’ Mauro Manotas).
San Jose Earthquakes (4-2-3-1): Daniel Vega; Marcos Lopez, Florian Jungwirth, Guram Kashia, Tommy Thompson; Judson, Jackson Yueill; Vako (88’ Gilbert Fuentes), Magnus Eriksson, Cristian Espinoza; Chris Wondolowski (90’ Kevin Partida)