Welcome in, welcome back, for another edition of your Monday morning Breakfast Links. It’s been an action-packed weekend and the city of Houston has been sweltering, blasting those thermometers well over 100 degrees all week. We’d like to take a second and recognize and appreciate our readers and followers; all the work we do here at Dynamo Theory, we do for the people. We’re dedicated to bringing you the best coverage and that dedication is unwavering. Win, lose or draw, we are there to bring you closer to your favorite organization with the coverage you want. There was plenty of action from the organization this weekend so sit back and relax; we’ve got you covered.
The Houston Dynamo took on FC Dallas in the most anticipated match of the season. In this 50th edition of the Texas Derby, it was exactly what we wanted to see and so much more. The match saw 4 goals, a packed house of over 21k ecstatic fans, the long-awaited Hector Herrera debut, some heated interactions from both sides, and throw in a hint of controversy as well just to really round the Derby off and fuel its fire. This was a new level of excitement, it could be felt the moment you arrived within the vicinity of PNC stadium. The fans were in the parking lot tailgating for hours before the match, in the heat. The raised level of excitement was a welcome addition to the Derby, and we can see that the changes for the better are well on their way.
The match ended in a 2-2 draw giving each team a vital point heading into that part of the season where points are necessary, and the playoff brackets begin to take shape. I feel like this is a reoccurring theme here and the Dynamo find themselves as the better team in the match, unlucky to not come away with the win. This could be chalked up to a mixture of excellent saves by keeper Maarten Paes and just plain poor finishing. The Dynamo certainly had their chances, and the creation was good to see with the team completing an impressive 91% of their passes (490) had 19 total shots (13 for FCD) 5 big chances created (2 for FCD) and a 2.43 xG to a 1.37 for FC Dallas. The Dynamo could have realistically won this match 4-2 with several chances coming up short in the end. The Dynamo had 60% possession and pressed well most of the match, but the 2nd half is where they really turned it on, registering 2.00 of their 2.43 xG in the 2nd half.
It was in transition where FC Dallas would make the Dynamo pay on several occasions throughout the match. Once Hector Herrera made his anticipated entrance, the Dynamo looked like a different team all together. He put in an excellent 35 minute shift, completing 84% of his passes, creating 2 big chances, blocked a shot, and was 100% (5 for 5) on long balls. His presence on the field elevated his teammates and he helped orchestrate the game plan while directing traffic. Herrera showed his true leadership ability, and in the short amount of time he has been here, it’s encouraging to see from the newest Dynamo addition.
The match saw goals from Thor Ulfarsson, his 3rd of the season, and the game tying goal at the absolute death by Teenage Hadebe. As far as Thor, the kid gets better every time he steps on the field. His confidence is growing rapidly, and we may be witnessing the beginning of something special there. The game tying goal by Hadebe was pure hustle. He had no business getting to the rebound of Darwin Quintero’s shot, but he caught the FC Dallas back line ball watching. It was a long, hot evening at PNC Stadium and in the 90 +11th minute, Teenage never gave up for a second. He was able to get between the surprised center backs and send the rebound home to give the Dynamo the much-needed point, and a reward for the hard work in front of an electrifying Houston crowd. It was a night to remember and many more are on the way, this organization have completed their 180-degree turn around and are now firmly moving in the right direction.
Buckle up, Houston. It’s going to be a glorious ride of ups and downs, but you aren’t going to want to miss out on this. The days of home-field advantage may be here to stay, making it difficult for other teams to come and play in Houston.
The Houston Dash lost 1-0 on the road against the Orlando Pride as they dropped their 2nd game in a row. Several players are still away on international duty and the Dash came out in the 3-4-3 formation with Emily Ogle, Ebony Salmon, and Joelle Anderson up top for the attack. The Dash struggled to get things going and an extremely unfortunate own goal from Ally Prisock, ended up being the difference. In her defense, there was not much she could do as she just happened to have the ball ricochet off her leg in the 79th minute. The Dash will be back in action, and back at home, against the Chicago Red Stars on Saturday, July 16th at 7:30 PM CT.
Houston Dynamo 2 took care of business and extended their home record to 6-0-0 in a big way, beating Real Monarchs 4-1. Dynamo 2 absolutely dominated from start to finish in just about every single statistical category. Head coach Kenny Bundy’s team is starting to catch their stride at the right time. They had their struggles, and it appears they have begun to turn the corner and are really starting to string together quality performances, and have now won 2 out of their last 3 matches.
Dynamo 2 announced earlier yesterday that they had signed 19-year-old Isaiah LeFlore from Sporting Clube de Braga B in Portugal. LefFlore also played under Dynamo head coach Paulo Nagamura with Sporting Kansas City II.
Mujeeb Murana opened the scoring in the 14th minute, Jacob Evans scored in the 58th minute, Kyle Edwards scored via penalty kick in the 61st minute, and new acquisition Isaiah LeFlore scored with his first and only shot on goal in the 63rd minute. With this convincing win, Dynamo 2 are now 4th in the Western Conference standings with 30 points (tied with 3rd place North Texas SC) and are now tied for 2nd in the entire league with 15 goals allowed all season, with a +9 goal differential. Only one other team, from either conference, has less goals allowed, Columbus Crew 2 have given up 12 and have a +18 goal differential.
Houston Dynamo 2 will be back in action in a pivotal away match against North Texas SC on July 15th at 8 PM CT. I’ll be covering the Dynamo 2sday article that will come out tomorrow, so I’m saving the full recap for that article. Don’t forget to check it out, I’ll recap the game in greater detail with some photos from the match as well. What an exciting group of guys on Dynamo 2. Hold it Down, Houston!