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Offense struggles in Houston Dynamo loss at Minnesota

The Dynamo struggled to come back from an early goalkeeping error which put them down in the first half. 

MLS: Houston Dynamo at Minnesota United FC Harrison Barden-USA TODAY Sports

Houston Dynamo FC were hoping to close their road trip on a positive note after falling earlier in the week to Austin FC, but unfortunately the offense had trouble making an impact in the 2-0 loss to Minnesota United FC.

Minnesota United were active early – as in the opening minute – with Sam Junqua fouling Adrien Hunou on the edge of the 18 yard box. Emmanuel Reynoso stepped up to take it and forced a difficult save by Dynamo goalkeeper Marko Marić.

The opening minutes had Minnesota in control of the possession and were using it to press high with the Dynamo sitting deeper. They capitalized on that in the 14th minute. The Dynamo struggled to clear the ball from danger and it would be shot from distance by Wil Trapp. Marić made the initial save comfortably, but spilled it right into the heads up run by Robin Lod who punished the Houston goalkeeper for the error to make it 1-0 to the home side.

Houston finally had a decent chance in the 22nd minute. Corey Baird received the ball in the attacking edge of the midfield and took his run towards goal with Memo Rodríguez making an overlapping run. Baird perfectly set up Memo, but went down in the process. Memo played the ball across goal, but no one was able to get on the end of it.

The Dynamo got so close to equalizing the game in the 32nd minute thanks to Matías Vera. Joe Corona, on the counter attack, switched the ball perfectly to Memo. Memo drew two defenders as it looked he was going in on goal, but he laid the pass off to Vera instead. Vera, from outside the 18 yard box, curled one which beat Minnesota goalkeeper Tyler Miller. However, it didn’t beat the crossbar which ricocheted off the top post and back onto Miller going out for a corner kick.

Minnesota would keep their 1-0 lead going into halftime, but the Dynamo looked better towards the end of the first half as they increased their possession in Minnesota’s half of the field and were winning the ball in the midfield which allowed them to transition to offense more quickly. However, that didn’t translate to finding the back of the net in the first 45 minutes of the game.

The second half opened up pretty well for both sides. The game flowed through the middle quickly which got the ball up to the attacking players for them to try to leave their mark. After losing possession, Derrick Jones fouled Hassani Dotson setting up a free kick just outside of the 18 yard box. Reynoso stepped up again to take it and his effort forced a spectacular save by Marić.

The Dynamo tried to respond shortly after Marić‘s save. Adalberto Carrasquilla played a ball out to Junqua who sent the ball in across goal finding Vera. Vera’s one touch finish was somehow kept out by Tyler Miller who caught the ball with his trailing foot.

Things would get worse for the Dynamo in the 71st minute. After Teenage Hadebe made a great play that led to a corner, Reynoso delivered a ball that Brent Kallman flicked on into the goal using the back of his head.

With the game continuing on the Dynamo increased their possession, but they had trouble extending possession in Minnesota’s half and really lacked creativity. The Loons had some very dangerous passes in the Dynamo half, but the Houston defenders were largely up to the task of clearing them.

After 90 minutes, the home side would walk away with all three points. The Dynamo have been missing some key offensive players in Maxi Urruti and Tyler Pasher with creativity in the final third really lacking against Minnesota. The defense, in general, did a good job with the exception of the early goalkeeping error and falling asleep on a corner.

The Dynamo will back at home in their next game when they take on the Colorado Rapids at BBVA Stadium on Saturday August 14th at 7:30 PM CT.

Goals:

14’ MNUFC: Robin Lod

71’ MNUFC: Brent Kallman (assisted by Emanuel Reynoso)

Disciplinary:

21’ HOU: Memo Rodríguez (yellow card)

21’ HOU: Sam Junqua (yellow card)

62’ HOU: Derrick Jones (yellow card)

Lineups:

Houston Dynamo (4-3-3): Marko Marić; Sam Junqua, Teenage Hadebe, Tim Parker, Zarek Valentin; Joe Corona (65’ Adalberto Carrasquilla ), Derrick Jones, Matías Vera; Memo Rodríguez (79’ Ian Hoffman), Corey Baird (88’ Mateo Bajamich), Fafà Picault (64’ Griffin Dorsey)

Minnesota United FC (4-2-3-1): Tyler Miller; Chase Gasper, Bakaye Dibassy, Brent Kallman, Romain Métanire; Hassani Dotson, Wil Trapp; Ethan Finlay (89’ Jacori Hayes), Emanuel Reynoso, Robin Lod (79’ Juan Agudelo); Adrien Hunou (67’ Niko Hansen)