Kinnear hopes to bolster squad

Houston may seek Designated Player, but only for the right fit

HOU_20110611_Levey_01_team

Photo Credit: 
Bob Levey / Getty Images

The Houston Dynamo are coming off an up-and-down first half of their
season, and with fellow Eastern Conference teams making moves to get
better, the calls are coming in from all sides for Houston to follow
suit. One move in particular that caught the attention of the club and its
fans was former Dynamo player Dwayne De Rosario’s departure from the New
York Red Bulls to D.C. United last week.

“A player that we know well has moved twice in the last three months,
and I can assure you we’re not sitting by idle,” Houston head coach
Dominic Kinnear said. “We’re on the phone trying to do things as well.”

There are no shortage of rumors surrounding a possible Houston move.
Various media outlets have linked the club with a number of stars from
last month's Gold Cup, including Carlos Costly, Jerry Bengtson, and
Rodolfo Zelaya. The reality of those players joining Houston is in
question, even amidst the calls for immediate action.

“One thing you look at is that you want a guy that makes sense a lot in
a lot of different ways,” Kinnear said. “One, does he help the team
win? Two, will the fans come out? And three, will he still have value on
the transfer market in the future?”

Finding that player has proven difficult for Houston. The club signed
Luis Ángel Landín in 2009 as a Designated Player and Koke earlier this season in the hope that
the strikers would provide the type of spark that would ignite their
play on the field and the reaction in the stands.

The signings failed to do either. Landín washed out after an injury-filled year and a half, and Koke lasted less than two months before
walking away from the team. While Houston has not struck the right deal yet, the Dynamo are still
looking to bring in reinforcements this summer. If that happens by way
of a high profile signing, then so be it.

But one thing remains certain: The Dynamo are wary of buying sight unseen.

“We’re trying to bring guys in and get a look, but that’s difficult to
do because guys don’t want to trial because they feel they deserve to be
signed on what they’ve done,” Kinnear said. “For us it’s not just,
‘Hey, this guy’s good, lets go for it,’ because the other side of it is
you’re dealing with a high-profile player and a different type of
contract. We’re trying to make sure that if we sign somebody, unless it’s proven
that we’ve seen this guy more than enough, that we can get a look at
him up close and make sure that he can start for us, because that’s what
we’re trying to do.”

Darrell Lovell covers the Houston Dynamo for MLSsoccer.com. Follow him on twitter at @Dynamoexaminer.