The Houston Dynamo remained unbeaten at home and continued their hot start to the season with a 2-0 win over Columbus Crew SC Saturday night at BBVA Compass Stadium.
Defensively, the team posted their first clean sheet of the season. Goalkeeper Joe Willis was credited with four saves on the night, but was well positioned throughout the match to deny numerous chances for Columbus
Houston opened the scoring in the third minute when forward Alberth Elis stripped the ball from Crew defender Lalas Abubakar near midfield and sprinted into the penalty area before finding forward Mauro Manotas with a centering pass. Manotas fought off a challenge from a Columbus defender and got a toe on the ball to tap it inside the near post for his third goal of the season. The assist was Elis’ fourth of the season and the Honduran international has now contributed to eight league goals for the Dynamo in seven games.
Houston doubled their lead in the 55th minute after Manotas drove to the byline and ripped a ball across the face of goal, forcing a save from Columbus and U.S. Men’s National Team goalkeeper Zack Steffen. The rebound fell to Dynamo midfielder Tomás Martínez, who rifled a shot from the top of the box for his second goal of the year.
Although they were outshot by Columbus 19-18 on the night, the Dynamo created the more dangerous chances throughout the night. Elis laid off a cross at the far post for Dynamo forward Memo Rodriguez inside the box in the 23rd minute, but Rodriguez’s effort was off target.
Houston’s offensive onslaught continued a few minutes later as Manotas won a corner kick off a blocked shot at the edge of the box, then Dynamo defender Maynor Figueroa forced a save at the near post from Steffen off a free kick after Elis suffered a foul outside the box in the 31st minute.
Rodriguez nearly picked up his fifth goal of the year off a free kick in the 52nd minute, forcing a diving effort from Steffen with a shot from outside the box that deflected off the crossbar after a deflection.
The Dynamo return to BBVA Compass Stadium on Saturday, May 4 to host FC Dallas for the first leg of the Texas Derby, presented by UT Physicians. Tickets for the match are on sale now, starting at $24, at HoustonDynamo.com or by phone at 713-276-4625 (GOAL).
Houston Dynamo 2-0 Columbus Crew SC
MLS Regular Season, Week 9
Saturday, April 27, 2019 – BBVA Compass Stadium – Houston, Texas
HOU: Mauro Manotas 3 (Alberth Elis 4) 3
HOU: Tomás Martínez 2 (unassisted) 55
Houston Dynamo: Joe Willis; Adam Lundkvist, Maynor Figueroa, Aljaž Struna, A.J. DeLaGarza; Matías Vera, Boniek García © (Darwin Cerén 76), Tomás Martínez (Juan David Cabezas 88); Memo Rodriguez (Tommy McNamara 72), Mauro Manotas, Alberth Elis
Substitutes not used: Tyler Deric, Alejandro Fuenmayor, Sam Junqua, Kevin Garcia
Total shots: 18 (Mauro Manotas 6); Shots on goal: 6 (Mauro Manotas 2); Fouls: 7 (Matías Vera 2); Offside: 1 (Memo Rodriguez 1); Corner kicks: 7 (Adam Lundkvist 4); Saves: 4 (Joe Willis 4)
Columbus Crew SC: Zack Steffen; Waylon Francis, Gastón Sauro, Lalas Abubakar, Héctor Jiménez; Ricardo Clark (Luis Argudo 81), Wil Trapp, Robinho, Eduardo Sosa (Niko Hansen 73), Justin Meram (Pedro Santos 56); Gyasi Zardes
Substitutes not used: Joe Bendik, Josh Williams, Connor Maloney, Patrick Mullins
Total shots: 20 (Ricardo Clark, Robinho 4); Shots on goal: 4 (Lalas Abubakar, Luis Argudo, Robinho, Gyasi Zardes 1); Fouls: 11 (Waylon Francis 5); Offside: 0; Corner kicks: 11 (Justin Meram 6); Saves: 4 (Zack Steffen 4)
CLB: Waylon Francis (caution; foul) 51
Referee: Allan Chapman
Assistant Referee 1: Jeremy Hanson
Assistant Referee 2: Jeremy Kieso
Fourth Official: Rosendo Mendoza
VAR: Ricardo Salazar
Weather: 84 degrees; Sunny