The Columbus Crew begin a new era at midweek when they play host to the Houston Dynamo at Crew Stadium. With Brian Bliss now in charge of the bench coaching duties, the Crew are eight points out of the final playoff position in the Eastern Conference following their 1-0 home win to Seattle at the weekend. The Dynamo are also in need of points, tied for fifth place in the division and the final postseason spot, after their 1-1 draw at Chicago to start their road swing.
Dynamo: Hall; Sarkodie, Boswell, Creavalle, Ashe; Johnson, Moffat, Davis ©, Driver; Bruin, Weaver
Subs: Marscheider, Lopez, Ching, Barnes, Chabala, Arena, Ownby
Columbus Crew: Lampson; Barson, Gehrig, Marshall ©, Wahl; Finlay, Trapp, Anor, Meram; Finley, Oduro
Subs: Withrow, Viana, Warzycha, Tchani, Speas, Sloan, Arrieta
Brad Davis has always been a great soccer talent, but in recent years he's taken it upon himself to become more than just talent and become a more complete athlete. The result has been inclusion in recent U.S. national team camps at a time when many players are starting to wind down.
Take a look at this profile of Davis from Houstonia Magazine's Michael Harding at what happened to facilitate that transformation as the Dynamo midfielder looks toward Brazil 2014.
Tune in to ESPN 97.5 FM tonight for a new episode of Soccer Matters with Glenn Davis! Glenn will talk everything soccer, from the end of the transfer window to the Dynamo's last-gasp draw against Chicago and their upcoming matches against Columbus and New York.
Dynamo goalkeeper Tally Hall will be a special guest on tonight's episode, and Glenn will be taking your calls.
Tonight's episode airs from 7-9 p.m. and can be heard on the radio on 97.5 FM or online at www.espn975.com.
The call-in number for the show is 713-780-3776.
Another weekend of results, and there’s still not much clarity in the Eastern Conference playoff race. A draw on the road against Chicago kept the Dynamo right in the middle of that mix; let’s look around at the other results from the weekend and how they impacted the standings.
Toronto FC 1, New England Revolution 1
New England could only come up with a draw in Toronto on Friday night, which keeps them level with the Dynamo at 37 points for fifth in the conference. Still, the Dynamo hold a game in hand on the Revs and could leapfrog them into sole possession of the final playoff spot with a result on Wednesday against the Columbus Crew.
Columbus Crew 0, Seattle Sounders 1
At home and up a man for over 80 minutes, the Crew could not get past the Sounders and wound up with a devastating loss that could just about end their playoff hopes. Columbus is now eight points adrift of the last playoff spot with just eight games left to play (and seven of those coming against teams above them in the Eastern Conference).
Columbus announced Monday morning that they have parted ways with head coach Robert Warzycha and appointed technical director Brian Bliss as his interim successor in an effort to push the team into the playoffs over the last few weeks of the season.
Philadelphia Union 0, Montreal Impact 0
A week after hanging five goals on the Dynamo, the Montreal Impact were held scoreless by the Philadelphia Union. The draw kept Montreal at the top of the standings with 42 points, but their lead over the Dynamo remains only five points.
Philadelphia remains in fourth place and only two points ahead of the Dynamo with two more games played than Houston. A Dynamo win on Wednesday evening would push them into sole possession of fourth place and only two points behind the conference leaders.
New York Red Bulls 2, D.C. United 1
D.C. United nearly pulled out a draw in this Atlantic Cup match, but Dwayne De Rosario’s penalty was saved by Luis Robles and the Red Bulls came out unscathed and with three points. The win pushed them into a tie for the top spot in the East, but Montreal still holds two games in hand over New York.
Sporting Kansas City 2, Colorado Rapids 1
Graham Zusi struck in the 88th minute to break the deadlock and give Sporting KC the win. Like the New York Red Bulls, Sporting is now tied with Montreal on points for the conference lead, but have played two more games at this point.
Sunday’s late draw keeps the Dynamo well within striking distance to move up in the standings, and they could do so as early as Wednesday against the Crew with an eye to do even more damage at home next Sunday against the New York Red Bulls (TICKETS). The draw also kept Chicago two points behind the Dynamo. Both teams have played the same amount of games.
The Chicago Fire and Houston Dynamo meet for a third time in a match with massive implications on the Eastern Conference playoff race when they face off Sunday afternoon at Toyota Park. The teams are separated by just two points in the standings, and both find themselves outside the top five positions at the start of the weekend. The Fire come in off a 1-0 home win vs. Sporting KC, while the Dynamo continue their road swing following a club-record 5-0 defeat at Montréal last weekend.
Dynamo:Hall; Sarkodie, Boswell, Brunner, Taylor; Garcia, Moffat, Creavalle, Davis ©; Barnes, Bruin
Subs: Marscheider, Ashe, Driver, Lopez, Ching, Johnson, Weaver
Chicago Fire: Johnson; Anibaba, Berry, Soumare, Segares; Alex, Larentowicz ©, Rios, Duka; Rolfe, Magee
Subs: Tornaghi, Jumper, Pause, Nyarko, Lindpere, Amarikwa, Anangono