Cameron's injury sends Houston scrambling for solutions
It went from bad to worse for the Houston Dynamo on Monday.
The club got word that midfielder Geoff Cameron will miss the remainder of the
season to undergo surgery to repair a torn PCL.
Cameron -- who had just started to begin to look comfortable
as the team’s attacking midfielder -- was expected to log heavy minutes for the
Dynamo this year. Now, several players will likely be asked to step up in his
While the team has already indicated it will search for a
midfielder to add to the roster, the obvious short-term solution would mean
more time in central midfield for Brad Davis. Last year, Davis showed he was
more than capable playing centrally when he filled in for Stuart Holden. However,
Davis’ service on the left will be sorely missed if he is forced centrally.
If Davis does shift inside, Corey Ashe seems the obvious
replacement on the left. Ashe has been filling in for Brian Mullan on the right
side of the Dynamo midfield as Mullan has started at forward.
As a result, it seems
likely that Cameron’s injury will immediately open the door for the return of
Luis Ángel Landín to the starting lineup. Houston’s designated player has
struggled since his acquisition, though, and failed to contribute offensively
as a substitute in the team’s last game against the Fire.
If Richard Mulrooney returns from injury, he or Adrian
Serioux may provide the Dynamo a less preferred, but more defensive option to
Davis. While Serioux struggled in his first extended minutes in midfield this
year, he has shown himself capable in MLS play, unlike Sammy Appiah and
Francisco Navas Cobo.
Navas Cobo has improved tremendously over his first two
months as a professional, as evidenced by coach Dominic Kinnear’s recently rewarding
the youngster with his MLS debut. But to expect the Dynamo academy product to
contribute as a starter at this time may put too much pressure on the young
Still, significant minutes off the bench seem much more likely for
Navas Cobo, Danny Cruz and Serioux.
For a Dynamo team already reeling from a list of walking
wounded that includes Mulrooney, Cam Weaver and Brian Ching, losing Cameron for
the year further exasperates Houston’s already lengthy injury woes. Houston have
continued to field a competitive team week after week despite these injuries
and other injuries in years prior.
The good news for Houston is the 2010 roster might be their
deepest ever and the club has some flexibility to add additional players or
trade some of its depth in other positions for a midfielder. The bad news is
the team’s depth is at its thinnest in midfield. Cameron’s injury may just
expose that fact until reinforcements arrive.
Dwain Capodice is a contributor to MLSsoccer.com. Questions or
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