Houston turned what looked like a huge negative into a positive on Saturday night with its 2-2 draw against FC Dallas.
The Dynamo went down to 10 men when rookie Kofi Sarkodie picked up his second yellow card in the 73rd minute, just three minutes after FC Dallas took the lead. Looking destined to suffer a second straight loss, the Dynamo showed much-needed resolve and pushed for a late equalizer.
Houston’s effort in the last 17 minutes paid off with an 87th-minute goal from Colin Clark to save a point against their in-state rivals.
“It’s tough to go down a man and be down 2-1, but it’s great that we showed the fight and energy at home to get the tying goal and end up with a point,” said Clark, who entered as a sub in the 66th minute.
Clark’s goal came off a stretch of play where Houston could have packed it in. With Dallas looking to kill the game and make the Dynamo chase, the home team pushed through and kept pressuring while looking for a chance it ultimately converted. Houston head coach Dominic Kinnear credited the attitude of his team for its ability to push through the late adversity and come out with a well-earned point.
“The way the game was played, if we would’ve walked out with nothing, it would have been the worst thing about it,” Kinnear said. “To keep going the way we did and to get that equalizer is [a] good thing, and the attitude to me is something [positive] I can point to on the field. The players' heads could’ve gone down, but the guys clenched their teeth a little bit and fought through it.”
There was certainly a sense of joy at pulling out the late draw, but the Dynamo understand that a win was there to be had. While the result is not one the Dynamo were hoping for at home, the circumstances of the draw make the result one the team will certainly take.
“I think it shows the desire and attitude of the team,” said captain Brad Davis, who notched his seventh and eighth assists of the year. “We’re not getting wins right now the way we want to, but the desire to stay in a game and not give up is fantastic. Even going down to 10 men, the guys kept going, and that says a lot about the character of this team.”
Darrell Lovell covers the Houston Dynamo for MLSsoccer.com. Follow him on twitter at @Dynamoexaminer.