Welcome to edition No. 9 of my weekly blog. It appears on the new HoustonDynamo.com every Monday.
As the final whistle blew on Saturday night, I was trying to evaluate my thoughts on the match. There were so many things to weigh and take into consideration. Getting the late equalizer is a sign of character … We had some good chances to win … We had some tough luck in Danny Cruz’s shot that ricocheted off both posts and in Lovel Palmer’s own goal … We gave up an unusual goal … We mostly controlled the match … At the end of the day, I think that we should view the performance as a positive and a step in the right direction as we look to get back to our usual form. Typically, we wouldn’t be so accepting of a home draw, but in this case, I think we can look at it as a building block.
We now head into a busy week that starts on Tuesday. That’s right; Tuesday. In case you missed it, we are hosting a U.S. Open Cup match vs. Miami FC at Robertson Stadium at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $8 for season ticket holders and $12 for all others, and there will be free parking on the Scott St. side at Robertson. It will be a general admission seating arrangement in a scaled down house. It is the first U.S. Open Cup match we have hosted since 2006 (a 3-0 win over FC Dallas). With an MLS match at Toronto FC on Thursday (ESPN2, 6pm), look for a unique lineup with some reserves getting a chance to impress.
This is a unique tournament, and watching these games is a lot of fun. I hope to see you there.
A win puts us through to the quarterfinals on July 6 vs. the Austin Aztex/Chivas USA winner. If it’s Chivas USA, then the match will be in Houston. If it’s Austin, then the match could be either here or there. If we host, tickets will go on sale on Wednesday on HoustonDynamo.com.
I thought Saturday's post-game tribute to Oliver Luck was very nice. Officially, this was his last MLS match as team president (although I’m sure we’ll see him around). For those of you that weren’t there, he was recognized on the field after the match. The entire team shared in the ceremony and presented him with an autographed photo. We are all going to miss him and wish him well at WVU. For those of you seeking an opportunity to wish Oliver well, we will probably host a more formal public reception later in the summer.
The World Cup has been amazing for soccer in this country. ESPN’s coverage has made it mainstream. Soccer, once difficult to find on the map, is now front and center. The world’s greatest sporting event is getting its due time here in the U.S., and people are watching … ESPN has reported a 60 percent increase in ratings over the 2006 World Cup. We are working on World Cup Final viewing party. Keep your eyes open for that news.
The All-Star Week event schedule is due to be released soon. A few things you should look out for include:
Charities 5K Run – Saturday, July 24
All-Star Kickoff Party – Monday, July 26 (private to season ticket holders)
MLS All-Star Jam – Tuesday, July 27
Brian Ching Post-Game Party – Wednesday, July 28
Be sure to save these dates. Further details will be in the upcoming official announcement.
A few other random thoughts …
-30 days until the
AT&T MLS All-Star Game. Do you
have your seats yet?
-17 days until SuperLiga starts (Pachuca, Thursday, July 15 – 7 p.m.)
-The Philadelphia Union opened their brand-new stadium yesterday in a match vs. Seattle. PPL Park becomes the ninth soccer-specific stadium in MLS.
-Do you think soccer might want to consider some use of technology after some of the blown calls at the World Cup? I bet most U.S., England, and Mexico fans do.
-That’s it for this week. I hope you are ready for another action-packed week of soccer ahead. Email comments to firstname.lastname@example.org.