Coming off of three consecutive losses, the Dynamo were hoping to turn things around after the World Cup break. Two defensive mistakes, however, cost Houston a much-needed three points at home on Saturday, as they tied the Colorado Rapids 2-2 at Robertson Stadium.
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“[There were] some positives and negatives,” said midfielder Danny Cruz. “We broke the losing streak, so that’s important; that being said, we wanted to come out with three points at home. But we take a point and look forward to Thursday against Toronto.”
Houston talked at the break about fixing its leaks in defense. On Saturday night, it was a poor turnover by Eddie Robinson and a ball deflecting into the net off of Lovel Palmer that doomed the Dynamo.
“No excuses, I let the team down tonight,” said a frank Robinson. “The effort that [my teammates] have put in these last two weeks to try to turn things around, and for me to make a mistake like that, it’s like me punching them. It’s disappointing, and mentally it’s tough.”
“We were doing fine until the huge mistake right before halftime,” said coach Dominic Kinnear. “We were well in control of the game and not giving up chances and keeping possession of the ball. It really turned the game around, and it took us a while to recover.”
The defense has now given up 11 goals in its last four MLS games, a disturbing trend for a team that prides itself on a total team defensive effort. Houston is now tied with the expansion Philadelphia Union for conceding the second most goals in MLS.
While the mistakes have to be frustrating, there were some positives on the night. Danny Cruz continued to impress, as he scored a goal and was unlucky not to have another as one shot somehow hit off both posts without crossing the line. Joseph Ngwenya also got his first start of the year, played well, and converted a goal himself. Both players contributed to Houston controlling more of the ball than they had in their three consecutive losses.
“I thought we did some pretty good things tonight [offensively],” said Brad Davis. “We moved the ball pretty well.”
However, it was Houston’s ability to battle back to earn a draw despite conceding the second goal late that might be the biggest positive on the night.
“The way things are going, it’s good that we showed some fight and walked away with a point,” said midfielder Corey Ashe. “It’s a good point, and we battled back.”
“We still fought to the end, got a good goal, and got a point when we could have put our heads down,” added Davis. “If we can just eliminate the mistakes and make other teams beat us, we will turn things around.”
Dwain Capodice is a contributor to MLSsoccer.com. Questions or comments can be sent via email to firstname.lastname@example.org.