HOUSTON — The Houston Dynamo’s best win of the season so far came at the expense of their opponent this weekend: D.C. United.
Houston dominated DC 4-1 on April 29 in front of a capacity crowd, and on national television, and the Dynamo are certainly under the assumption DC has not forgotten. The two teams meet in the final match of their regular season series Saturday night at RFK Stadium (5 pm CT, TeleFutura).
“One thing you can say is that any time a team gets beat, the next time the game comes around they’re going to be ready for you and very motivated,” Dynamo head coach Dominic Kinnear said.
Added midfielder Geoff Cameron: “We know they’re going to come out hard because I’m sure they remember that result, so I’m sure they’re going play hard. It’s the same with us. We can’t go in there lightly because of the last result.”
United has shown steady improvement since that game under head coach Ben Olsen, dropping just one match in their last seven since the trip to Houston. That run has been fueled by an improved defense and the growing relationship between forwards Charlie Davies and Josh Wolff.
“I’m sure they’ve looked back at that game and seen why they didn’t do well, and have tried to correct those errors,” Kinnear said. “I think they’ve gotten better. You have your highs and lows as a team, but you grow and mature and I think Ben’s done well for them.”
While DC has made improvements, the Dynamo are looking back to pick out some keys to future success. The four-goal explosion — spearheaded by rookie Will Bruin’s hat trick — was the season’s best for Houston.
With the team struggling over the past few weeks, a return to that performance could provide some clues to Houston getting back on track.
“If you want to look back at that game you can see what we did while we were successful,” Kinnear said.
Added goalkeeper Tally Hall: “It’s a simple game and I think we’ve made it too hard on ourselves, and we’ve been punished for it. We haven’t gotten a road win and it’s bugging me, and I know it’s bugging everyone.”
Darrell Lovell covers the Houston Dynamo for MLSsoccer.com. Follow him on twitter at @Dynamoexaminer.