Houston's Cameron may return to defense

Injuries might force recovering MF back to his former position

The 2010 Houston Dynamo may take a page out of the 2009 Dynamo playbook in an attempt to jumpstart the team’s season. At practice Thursday, 2009 MLS Best XI defender Geoff Cameron was splitting time with defenders Bobby Boswell and Eddie Robinson in the center of the Dynamo defense.

“We will look at it,” head coach Dominic Kinnear said of moving the recently recovered Cameron into the back four. “We have some banged-up center backs right now, and we have to put our best team on the field. If that means Geoff goes back to center back, then that is what we will do.”

While Cameron has been practicing part of the time in the center of defense, his role against New England is not exactly laid out yet. Cameron, though, hopes that he can now provide a 90-minute option for the team.

“My fitness is good, as I have been running a lot and I am making sure my body is ready for the game,” said Cameron. “I haven’t talked to Dom [Kinnear] yet and he hasn’t talked to me, but I am just trying to be available, and hopefully I’ll play.”

No one can deny that the Dynamo defense has struggled this year. While those struggles may be partially the result of the team’s issues in central midfield replacing Stuart Holden and Ricardo Clark, the defense has not exactly played error-free.

“We have to cut out the big mistakes,” noted Kinnear. “When you make big ones, it comes back to haunt you, and that’s what is happening right now.”

The game plan entering this season was to use Cameron primarily in midfield. Like Holden, it took Cameron some time to get comfortable with his new role. However, just when he appeared to be settling in and playing well, he suffered a serious knee injury.

“You always want your guys healthy, especially someone like Geoff who can change the dynamic of a game with his big old goofy strides,” said Boswell. “I am excited he’s back, and the team needs him, and with him coming back it is another option.”

The other options include Ryan Cochrane and Adrian Serioux, both of whom practiced with the team on Thursday, but still will be game-time decisions at best. Robinson also took a hard knock late at practice and departed early. Regardless, the return of Cameron provides Houston some additional flexibility in the back.

“To not have [Adrian and Ryan] as an option hurts us as a team, as they have been pretty good,” said Dynamo goalkeeper Tally Hall. “But we can’t look at that as an excuse, and we have to move on. With Geoff coming back, we have options back there.”

Dwain Capodice is a contributor to MLSsoccer.com. Questions or Comments can be sent via email to dwaincapodice@gmail.com.