The Houston Dynamo went into Gillette Stadium with a score to settle.
On May 18 the Dynamo dropped just their second loss ever at BBVA Compass Stadium to the New England Revolution. The 2-0 result was the second in what would be a seven game winless streak. The thing that stuck out in Houston’s collective memory about the May loss had as much to do with what they did on that day than what the Revs did.
After that game the Dynamo talked about not answering the bell and allowing New England to take the game to them on their home field. With that fresh in their minds, the normally level-headed Dynamo went into Gillette Stadium looking for payback.
“We kind of spoke about it before the game. They came in and beat us and we were disappointed about it, disappointed in ourselves,” midfielder Adam Moffat, who scored both of Houston’s goals, said. “It was too easy for them, the last game we played. We wanted to come in and get a little revenge.”
Saturday Houston came out intent to return that favor on the Revs home turf. The Dynamo answered every challenge against the Revs on Saturday, especially early, and were able to take the first goal to put the home team behind the eight-ball in an eventual 2-1 victory.
Matching that intensity against a physical team like New England is a requirement if you’re going to be successful and was something that was missing from Houston’s game last time around.
“We’re on the road, so we knew it was going to be a battle,” said forward Cam Weaver. “We wanted to come out and be physical and kind of dictate the game – that was our game plan. I thought we did that well.”
In addition to matching New England’s physicality and challenges, Houston bossed the stats and run of play; outshooting, passing and possessing the home team. But that only goes so far. Goals were needed to deliver the crucial blow and Moffat obliged scoring two second half gems to seal the Dynamo's third road victory of the season.
The fact that it came against a team that delivered their second loss at BBVA Compass Stadium was just a way to help ease the pain of a past loss and has Houston on a positive track heading into a bye week.
“It was fortunate it was just a month ago so it was fresh in our minds, so we wanted to come in and get that revenge and we did,” Moffat said. “Now its two wins back to back is great and we’ve got a little time off with two weeks at home.”
Darrell Lovell covers the Houston Dynamo for MLSsoccer.com