On Wednesday, the Houston Dynamo announced the full schedule for the 2013 regular season. Although this will be the Dynamo's second season at BBVA Compass Stadium, it's the first season in which Houston can play home games starting in March. Last year's home schedule did not start until May 12, and as a result, there were a lot of Houston home games in a short period of time.
Here are some key takeaways from the 2013 Dynamo schedule:
As previously announced, the Dynamo will open the season at home against D.C. United on Saturday, March 2. The re-match of last year's Eastern Conference Championship will be broadcast on NBC Sports Network beginning at 7 p.m. CT.
Similar to last year, the Dynamo and FC Dallas will square off only once in 2013. That match will take place on Sunday, March 17 as part of Major League Soccer's Rivalry Week. Since last year's match was played at BBVA Compass Stadium, this year's match will be played at FC Dallas Stadium. The winner of the match will take home El Capitan, a Civil War-era mountain howitzer.
The Dynamo and Sporting KC have played each other in each of the past two playoffs. In 2011, the Dynamo knocked off Sporting in the Eastern Conference Championship. In 2012, Houston defeated SKC in the Eastern Conference semifinals. In total, the two teams have played each other nine times in all competitions over the past two years. This year, the two squads will meet an additional three times, with the May 12 home match to be broadcast nationally on ESPN and the May 26 road match to be broadcast on NBC Sports Network.
Speaking of national broadcasts, the Dynamo will play on national TV 13 times in 2013. They will play three times on ESPN2, once on ESPN, three times on NBC Sports Network, once on NBC and five times in Spanish on UniMás.
Potential Road Trips?
The fun part of the schedule announcement is the chance to figure out which games Dynamo fans will be able to travel to. You can expect a large contingent will make the trek up I-45 for the Texas Derby on March 17. Chicago (Sept. 1) and Sporting KC (May 26) are also drivable for those fans wanting to see their club on the road. If you want to see the LA Galaxy this year, you will have to make the trek to California, as the two-time defending MLS Cup champions do not come to Houston in 2013 (at least not during the regular season).
In 2012, the Dynamo had five home games on weeknights and 12 on weekends. In 2013, the Dynamo will have only one weeknight game, with the remaining 16 MLS home games to be played on Friday, Saturday or Sunday. The lone weeknight game is Wednesday, Oct. 9 against Sporting KC.
So what do you think Dynamo fans? Do you like the schedule? Which match are you circling on your calendar?
As a society, we love our "I remember when ..." moments. People love to relive the past and remember where they were or what they felt during that particular moment. For Dynamo fans, it's hard to put into words what the last 12 months have felt like, but I'm going to try anyway. Here are my ten “I remember when …” moments from the 2012 season:
- I remember when the Dynamo opened BBVA Compass Stadium in front of a sold-out crowd on national TV. The anticipation, the atmosphere and the result all lived up the hype with the seven-year journey for a stadium to call their own finally complete.
- I remember when the Dynamo completed an undefeated home campaign, becoming only the fourth team in MLS history to complete the feat.
- I remember when Will Bruin became a legitimate goal scorer in Major League Soccer, breaking the Dynamo’s single season scoring mark in all competitions with 16.
- I remember when Brian Ching redefined the word “leader”, thriving in his new role as a substitute to the tune of five goals and five assists.
- I remember when I first saw Boniek Garcia play, a wiry Honduran who caused whiplash with the amount of times he made you do a double-take.
- I remember when Dominic Kinnear cemented his place among the coaching elite, leading Houston to its fourth MLS Cup final in seven seasons.
- I remember when the Dynamo sported one of the top goalkeeping tandems in Major League Soccer. Tally Hall broke Houston’s mark for shutouts by a goalkeeper and Tyler Deric led the Dynamo Reserves to a division title and helped Houston advance out of their group into the CONCACAF Champions League quarterfinals.
- I remember when I first saw Calen Carr leap over the corner flag to celebrate a goal. It came against Sporting Kansas City and it set the tone for goal celebrations for the rest of the season.
- I remember former Everton star Tim Cahill’s first game at BBVA Compass Stadium. I remember it less for the fact that Cahill played and more for the fact that the Dynamo capped a five-game winning streak with a 2-0 win over New York to move the team into first place in the Eastern Conference.
- I remember when Sporting Kansas City supplanted FC Dallas as Houston’s new rival. Sure, Dallas and the Dynamo will battle for El Capitan every year, but due to the unbalanced scheduled, they play only once during the regular season. The Dynamo and Sporting KC have played nine times in all competitions over the past two years and Houston has knocked SKC out of the playoffs each of the past two seasons. Both teams have reloaded with new weapons in the off-season and are ready to challenge again for the Eastern Conference crown.
To be honest, I could probably continue my list for days. It was an incredible year that will be hard to duplicate. But now I want to hear from you. What are your “I remember when…” moments from 2012?
In case you missed it, the University of Houston recently unveiled plans for their new on-campus football stadium. With the building of a new stadium comes the demolition of an old one. Check out the video below to see the Robertson Stadium scoreboard being taken down.
In six years at The Rob, the Dynamo went 50-16-26 in the regular season and 12-7-4 in the postseason, making the rustic Houston stadium one of the premiere home-field advantages in MLS.
Thanks for the memories, Robertson Stadium. You will be missed.
Counting down the hours until your holiday break begins? We've got something coming to help pass the time. Dynamo president Chris Canetti will be taking fan questions on HoustonDynamo.com on Friday at 2 p.m. CT. All topics are fair game: from the business to the team to what he has planned for the holidays.
See you tomorrow!
MLSssoccer.com's Houston Dynamo beat writer Darrell Lovell is reporting that Dynamo Academy product Sebastien Ibeagha, one of the top prospects in college soccer has turned down an offer from Major League Soccer and will return to Duke for his senior season.
Hearing Dynamo homegrown product Sebastien Ibeagha is 100% going back to school at Duke for his SR yr. Dynamo made a big run at him.
— Darrell Lovell(@DarrellLovell) December 20, 2012
The reigning ACC defender of the year has been a staple of the Duke back line over the past three seasons and has also been involved with multiple U.S. youth national team camps. Ibeagha was part of the 2010 Dynamo U-18 squad that advanced to the playoffs in its inaugural season in the USSF Development Academy League.
From today until Dec. 30, MLSsoccer.com will be counting down the 12 most important stories of the year in Major League Soccer. These stories were voted on by MLSsoccer.com's panel of 20 editors, writers, videographers and statistics specialists.
The first story on the countdown is one that will forever be in the minds of anyone associated with the Dynamo organization.
For six years, Dynamo players played and practiced on the campus of the University of Houston. Although the team was the epitome of success, the team achieved that success under less than ideal conditions.
On May 12, 2012, Dynamo players and coaches saw the fulfillment of a seven-year promise with the opening of BBVA Compass Stadium. In front of a sold-old crowd, and televised on NBC Sports Network, the Dynamo defeated D.C. United 1-0 to send the 22,000 fans home happy (a common occurance in 2012). Brad Davis scored the game's lone goal in the second half, although he admitted after that he would have liked for Brian Ching to get that first goal.
On Tuesday, Major League Soccer announced the 2013 home openers for all 19 MLS clubs. The Dynamo will open next season at home on March 2 against D.C. United. This will be the second consecutive year the Dynamo play United in a home opener.
The Dynamo are 9-4-2 all-time against United in the regular season and are 10-0-1 against D.C. in Houston in all competitions. That record includes two SuperLiga wins against United and last year's 3-1 playoff victory in their Eastern Conference Championship series.
It's important to note that just because the Dynamo are not listed again on the chart, does not mean they have the next three weekends off. It just means they are not any other club's home opener.
Following the MLS opener against D.C. United, the Dynamo will take on Santos Laguna in the quarterfinals of the 2012-13 CONCACAF Champions Leauge. The exact dates of the two-legged series have not been confirmed, but the first leg will be either March 5, 6 or 7 with the second leg to be played March 12, 13 or 14. One of those matches will be at BBVA Compass Stadium with the other match to be played at Estadio Corona in Torreón, Mexico.
As a result of those matches against Santos, the Dynamo will have a bye the second week of the MLS season. The Dynamo should resume MLS play the weekend of Saturday, March 16 but whether the Dynamo have a match that weekend and whether that match is home or away will not be announced until after the new year.
At this time, the only way to secure tickets to both the home opener and the match against Santos are through full or partial season ticket packages. Fans are encouraged to act quickly to secure their seats as both matches are expected to sell out.
Between the regular season and the playoffs, the Houston Dynamo scored 57 goals. Did you miss any of them? Don't worry, we've got you covered.
In honor of today being 12/12/12, I've decided to take a look at the number 12 and see its place in the 2012 season. Are some of these numbers a stretch? Absolutely. Does it make this less fun? Absolutely not.
12 - Goals by Will Bruin (also wears number 12)
12 - Assists by Brad Davis
12 - Shutouts by Tally Hall
12 - Shots attempted by Andre Hainault
12 - Shots on goal by Boniek Garcia
12 - Number of times Will Bruin was offside
12 - Number of goals the Dynamo allowed at home
12 - Number of shots Geoff Cameron blocked for the Dynamo
12 - The Dynamo opened up BBVA Compass Stadium on May 12 with a 1-0 win over D.C. United
-12 - The Dynamo's road-goal differential in 2012
Interestingly enough, three players in Dynamo history have worn the No. 12: Will Bruin, Julian Nash and James Georgeff. We all know the contributions that Bruin has made to the Dynamo, but what of the other two?
Nash was a Dynamo original, moving with the Earthquakes to Houston after the 2005 season. In two seasons in Houston, Nash made six appearances and played only 95 minutes. Nash is currently a Senior Associate at Silicon Valley Bank in San Francisco.
Georgeff was drafted by the Dynamo in the fourth round of the 2008 MLS Supplemental Draft. The Australia native did not feature for Houston and most recently played for Torgelower SV in the fifth tier of the German football pyramid.
With the 2012 season in the books, Dynamo head coach Dominic Kinnear and his staff must now turn their attention to the 2013 season. One player who will not be a part of the squad next year is midfielder Colin Clark. Clark and the Dynamo agreed to part ways at the conclusion of this past season.
“It’s been decided that we’re going to part ways with Colin Clark and let him go in another direction in his career,” Dynamo president Chris Canetti told the Houston Chronicle.
Clark was acquired by the Dynamo in a trade with the Colorado Rapids in September 2010. In two full seasons in Houston, Clark made 43 regular season appearances (23 starts) and tallied five goals and three assists. Clark's lone goal of the 2012 season came in a 1-0 home win over Real Salt Lake on Sept. 6. The Colorado native also started all four CONCACAF Champions League group stage matches in 2012 and recorded two assists as the Dynamo advanced out of their group and into the quarterfinals of the tournament.
I'd like to thank the @houstondynamo Staff, FO, & Fans for the opportunity to represent your outstanding franchise.
— Colin Clark (@cOlin_cLark7) December 3, 2012