It was likely a must-win match for the Houston Dynamo. It would have gone a long way toward improving their playoff chances.
But despite putting together one of their best performances of the year, the Dynamo’s poor finishing undid them on Sunday night as they fell 2-1 to the San Jose Earthquakes. And it all seemed very familiar.
“If you want a definition of our season, just watch a tape of this game,” said defender Eddie Robinson. “I don’t know that you can play any better and come away with zero points. Over the course of a season, you expect to have a game like this, but for us, we have probably had eight or ten this season.”
Dynamo head coach Dominic Kinnear echoed the frustration of his players after the game.
“I’m shocked we didn’t come out with anything from this game,” he said.
Houston created 16 official shots, but only six of those opportunities were put on goal. They had three point-blank headers, all of which completely missed the target.
“We had chances galore, and that bit us hard in the rear tonight, not scoring goals,” said Kinnear. “If you don’t score goals, it all goes for nothing. And that’s what we got out of the game, nothing.”
Forward Cam Weaver was particularly hard on himself after the game for the team’s poor finishing after filling in at forward for Brian Ching, who was only available off the bench due to the calf injury he suffered last week. Weaver had three good looks that he should have buried.
“I should have had a few, and I feel as if I let the team down,” said Weaver. “As a striker, when you get those chances, you have to put them away. It’s really tough to swallow.”
While Houston will rue its missed opportunities in front of goal, the defense gave up two goals on the only two dangerous chances on the night. On the first, Geovanni ran free with no player stopping his run. On the second, a quick counterattack found Houston out of shape and scrambling to recover as Geovanni scored the winner.
“It’s been the story of the season that we are too easy to break down and we give up goals at critical moments,” said goalkeeper Pat Onstad, who wore the captain’s armband for the first time in his Dynamo career.
With the loss, Houston is not mathematically eliminated from playoff contention. However, a six-point swing, especially at home, against the team currently sitting in the final playoff spot may have put the final nail in the coffin in Houston’s playoff hopes.
Dwain Capodice is a contributor to MLSsoccer.com. Questions or Comments can be sent via email to firstname.lastname@example.org.