The Houston Dynamo came into Saturday's match against Toronto FC looking to right the ship. Coming out of the match with a shutout, which is something the team will take as a positive, the 0-0 result left a bad taste in their mouths on the attacking side of the ball.
“They defended well,” said head coach Dominic Kinnear. "We had some chances, we could’ve scored some goals and we didn’t."
“It helps to have a veteran team that’s motivated to do better,” continued the Dynamo boss. “I think that’s what we have. As a whole, as a staff and as a team we’re not happy right now because you want to win.”
The scoreless draw comes three days after the club was shut out in a 2-0 loss to the Montreal Impact. Including their 3-0 loss in US Open Cup play to FC Dallas, it has been three games without a goal for the Dynamo.
One player who is particularly frustrated with the output is Will Bruin. Held scoreless for the ninth time in the last 10 games, he was left to ponder a night of missed chances. The forward, who set a Dynamo record for goals last year with 16, had five chances on the night including a 26th minute point blank header. Yet, he was unable to crack the TFC goal.
“I need to finish my chances,” Bruin said. “We got a shutout, but we got shut out, too. That’s getting real frustrating for me as a forward. We need to score plain and simple.”
Bruin’s and Houston’s struggles were made worse considering the club seemed to be doing the things necessary to score. They were pushing up the flanks, getting in good balls to players in good positions but the goal never came.
“The hustle and everything’s there it’s just the final third,” Bruin said. “We’re getting our chances and right now we’re not finishing them. The defense played great tonight. With me being an attacking player it frustrates the hell out of me, not scoring.”
Houston’s struggles in front of goalswere one side of the coin. The Dynamo did keep Toronto off the board and kept the Canadian club from challenging Houston's goal for most of the game. Still, the club left the game lacking the feeling they were looking for coming in.
“It’s tough when we’re a team accustomed to getting wins, especially at home,” fullback Kofi Sarkodie said. “This adversity will be a good test to how deep and strong our team is.
“We’ve just got to continue to push and try and finish. Maybe we’ll break through and the floodgates will open and we’ll have a different conversation. Until then, we’ve just got to keep working hard.”
Darrell Lovell covers the Houston Dynamo for MLSsoccer.com.