Houston Dynamo midfielder Colin Clark has a reputation for using his pace and agility to beat opponents. But these days, it’s his injury history that gets the most attention. With a new home in Houston and a year separating him from his last knee surgery, the Dynamo and Clark are hoping to change that.
“On his day, he’s one of those players in the league that one-on-one can turn a game,” Houston manager Dominic Kinnear said to MLSsoccer.com. “He puts defenders on their heels, and he’s not afraid to go at guys.”
When healthy, Kinnear believes that Clark has the ability to change a match at any time with his ability to create for himself and for his teammates from the wing. That’s something that is very important for a team like Houston that has traditionally built its game on flank play.
“I think wide play is so important in MLS, and he’s definitely a guy who can play on the left or right for us and provide that,” Kinnear said.
With Brad Davis the incumbent starter at left midfield, the left-footed Clark is likely get his shot on the opposite side of the field. From the right side Clark will have the opportunity to cut in on his left foot and go for goal or whip balls in the box. Whether it’s the right or left wing, Clark is simply looking forward to getting on the field.
“I’m open to [playing on the right], and it could add a different element to my game playing on the right,” Clark said. “Wherever I can help this team is where I’ll play.”
Clark joined a light training session Monday before the team left for Phoenix. It was his first action with the club this preseason as he waits to be cleared for full contact training.
When asked about a timetable Clark indicated he will likely miss the first four or five games of the season and is hoping to use the reserve league to get into game shape.
“With the reserve league coming back, it will allow me some game time and hopefully it will be a quick turnaround once I get going.”
Darrell Lovell covers the Houston Dynamo for MLSsoccer.com. Follow him on twitter at @Dynamoexaminer.