Houston Dynamo fans got their first look at new signing Carlo Costly on Saturday night, as the Honduran forward made his debut in Philadelphia. After getting clearance to participate fully with the team on Friday, Costly entered the match in the 61st minute for Cam Weaver and paired with Brian Ching for the final 30 minutes of the club’s 1-1 draw against the Union at PPL Park.
But as the Dynamo quickly learned, it will take time for Costly to become a valuable midseason addition.
“I think it's going to take a little bit for him to get acclimated to his new teammates and his new team,” midfielder Brad Davis said. “But him being a guy that's played in some good leagues, I think he's going to adapt a bit quicker than someone else might.”
While touches were tough to come by against the well-organized Union defense, Costly seems to be winning over his teammates in his first days in Dynamo orange.
“I think Carlo has the right attitude — he came in and the guys like him right off the bat,” said fellow newcomer Adam Moffat. “We're really looking forward to seeing him get on the field more and make more of a contribution for us.”
Did Davis make his case?
Since Jurgen Klinsmann was named the new head coach of the U.S. men’s national team, a number of players have been mentioned as having a new chance to work their way onto the national scene.
Davis and fellow Dynamo midfielder Geoff Cameron are among those in the conversation, especially after both appeared in the MLS All-Star Game last month. With Klinsmann in attendance (the U.S. plays Mexico in Philadelphia on Wednesday), Saturday night was a chance for everyone, including Cameron and Davis, to show what they have to offer.
Cameron certainly made a case for himself with a fantastic move to bring the ball down and strike a long range game-tying goal in the 85th minute. After the game though, it was the MLS assist-leader Davis who was the topic of conversation for head coach Dominic Kinnear.
“I thought he played well enough,” Kinnear said of Davis. “Obviously since you're asking this question, he's played well enough to be considered. Hopefully he does get a chance.”
Battle of All-Star goalkeepers
Saturday’s final score should not surprise anyone, considering the talents that manned the nets for both clubs. Houston’s Tally Hall and Philadelphia’s Faryd Mondragón were two of the goalkeepers that represented MLS in the All-Star Game against Manchester United. Considering their reputations as shot-stoppers, the 1-1 decision was nothing short of what was expected.
“Tally's huge,” Moffat said. “He's come up big a lot of times for this team this year. It's always good when you have someone there behind you, especially [for] defenders, who can bail you out at times.”
Darrell Lovell covers the Houston Dynamo for MLSsoccer.com. Follow him on twitter at @Dynamoexaminer.