MLS Regular Season
Few teams have had a busier offseason than the
Houston Dynamo, making them one of the most intriguing clubs in MLS heading into the
Ahead of the home opener against the Philadelphia Union on Saturday night, MLSsoccer.com sat down with Dynamo president of business operations Chris Canetti, who spoke about the club's DP prospects and its player acquisition strategy.
MLSsoccer.com: How does it
feel to finally be getting the guys on the field and seeing how things are
going to go?
After all the preseason talk and analysis, the Houston Dynamo are ready to turn the page and get down to business in 2011.
A lot has happened since the end of 2010. The club acquired 10 new players, and in the process got younger, and some say faster and more agile. The club also broke ground on a new soccer-specific stadium, which will open in 2012, and is close to completion on their new training facility. Still, questions about how it all went so wrong so quickly in 2010 linger.
vs. Philadelphia Union
Saturday, March 19, 7:30 p.m. CT
Robertson Stadium, Houston, TX
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All-time record: Philadelphia leads 1-0-1
The March 26 and 29 FIFA dates are likely to provide an early test of depth for a number of MLS teams, including the Dynamo. New Houston defender Jermaine Taylor will join
Dane Richards and other MLS players in Jamaican camp, forcing him to miss Houston's March 25 game at Seattle. Taylor has been a starter for Houston
through most of preseason, solidifying a defense that conceded 49 goals
in 2010, second worst in the league.
It’s not easy replacing a legend. But that’s okay for Houston’s Tally Hall – he doesn’t shirk the difficult path.
Hall is slated to be the Houston Dynamo’s No. 1 goalkeeper this year. It’s a spot he’s earned, and a spot he intends to keep.
With an 8-1-3 record, a much-needed sense of confidence, and in relatively good health, the Houston Dynamo close the book on a rousingly successful preseason. Here are three things we learned as the 2011 season opener vs. Philadelphia (buy tickets now) approaches:
1. Depth won’t be an issue
Nearly eight months after his last knee surgery, Colin Clark looks to be closing in on his official debut for the Houston Dynamo. After being traded to the club last August, Clark has spent more time with the team trainer than with his teammates, but a new workout has the midfielder optimistic that ratio will reverse soon.
Friday night’s 1-0 loss to the Columbus Crew was costly for the Houston Dynamo. Captain Brian Ching re-injured his hamstring, adding him to a list of players that will sit out of the final preseason match against the New England Revolution on Sunday afternoon (2 p.m., Comcast Sports).
Two high-profile offseason acquisitions, Hunter Freeman and Kofi Sarkodie, are poised to give the Houston Dynamo defense a new look in 2011. The duo’s attacking acumen and ability to cover ground defensively add a much-needed athletic element to a rebuilding Dynamo back line. Their arrival has created a stiff competition for playing time at fullback heading into the regular season.