Tag Archive | "Houston Dynamo"

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Photo Gallery: Sounders FC vs Houston Dynamo

Posted on 24 March 2012 by dlindsay

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Sounders FC defeated Houston Dynamo 2-0 on Friday in front of over 38,000 fans in Seattle. Continue Reading

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Photo Gallery: Sounders 1 – Dynamo 1

Posted on 26 March 2011 by dlindsay

Sounders FC dominated for much of the game but settled for a come-from-behind 1-1 draw against rival Houston Dynamo. Photos provided by ASN photographer David Lindsay.

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Photos from the Union’s 2011 Season Opener in Houston

Posted on 20 March 2011 by Breton Bonnette

The pile-up.

ASN Philly’s EMILY PEASE and HEIDI ZIKOURIS were on hand in Houston to witness and help capture the Union’s win in the 2011 Home Opener. Relive the fun in Houston as the Union left Texas with a 1-0 win and their first away points of the season.

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A win is a win in Houston, Union take three from Texas

Posted on 20 March 2011 by Breton Bonnette

Photo by Emily Pease, ASN Philly

What a difference a year and some change makes. The Union dismissed bad inaugural season habits  (2-12-1 away) in their season opener, winning away in Houston and grabbing a shutout all in one fell swoop to start the new year.

Piotr Nowak’s first starting lineup of the new season included a couple surprises. The omission of Danny Mwanga left some scratching their heads but it was the announcement of Faryd Mondragon as the captain for the 2011 season really had Union fans asking questions. Danny Califf, captain during the inaugural year, didn’t seem fazed one bit as he produced a performance that was worthy of captaincy – grabbing the game-winner and acting as part of a formidable defensive pairing with newcomer Carlos Valdes. The 5th minute Califf game-winner came off of a Sebastien Le Toux shot that rang off the cross-bar following a dangerous Sheanon Williams long throw. A putback that silenced the crowd of 19,000 plus at Robertson Stadium, Califf’s winner dampened the prospects of a new season for Dynamo fans.

The Union won a tough, gritty away match-up, a rare occasion during their 2010 season. After only two away wins and shutouts respectively last season, Union fans were certainly not expecting to leave Houston with a 1-0 shutout and with their first away points of the year. The new signings fared well, however, and provided a sense of composure even during the most hectic moments of the game. Faryd Mondragon won critics over making a couple critical saves and commanding his area with a reliability that was lacking with the Seitz/Knighton tandem of yesteryear. Carlos Valdes made several crucial interceptions in the penalty area and broke up Houston attacks alongside Danny Califf. Brian Carroll wasn’t lights out but he certainly displayed his pedigree, calm and relatively effective in transition. Carlos Ruiz angered Houston’s fans and the Houston backline, creating a chance or two for himself. For the most part, there was a glimpse of the positives and negatives of what El Pescadito has to offer (a dive here, a won free kick there). Several partnerships still need to develop (Califf/Valdes, Carroll/Miglioranzi, Ruiz/Le Toux) before the new Union can mount a consistent charge in the Eastern Conference but the pieces it’s clear are there. It wasn’t the prettiest of wins but if the Union are going to make the playoffs this season, winning ugly is a necessity.

The Union will open up their home schedule this coming Saturday, March 26, as Shea Salinas and the Vancouver Whitecaps visit PPL Park. The ‘Caps are coming off an opening day 4-2 win against hapless Toronto FC. Led by designated player Eric Hassli (two goals vs. Toronto) and American international Jay DeMerit, Vancouver will look to extend their opening day euphoria with their first away points in club history.

Photos, player ratings, and much more to come.

Philadelphia Union’s Starting XI




Le Toux——————Nakazawa———————–Mapp


Substitutes Used: Danny Mwanga, Gabriel Farfan, Amobi Okugo

Substitutes Not Used: Chris Agorsor, Jack McInerney, Roger Torres, Zac MacMath.

TOTAL SHOTS: 6 (Sebastien Le Toux 2, Justin Mapp 2); SHOTS ON GOAL: 4 (Justin Mapp 2); FOULS: 13 (4 tied with 2); OFFSIDES: 3 (3 tied with 1); CORNER KICKS: 1 (Justin Mapp 1); SAVES: 3 (Faryd Mondragon 3)

Houston Dynamo’s Starting XI

——————————–T. Hall——————————

Freeman——–Boswell———–J. Taylor———-Hainault


———————Garey————W. Bruin——————-

Substitutes Not Used: Mike Chabala, Eddie Robinson, Kofi Sarkodie, Tyler Deric.

TOTAL SHOTS: 14 (Brad Davis 3); SHOTS ON GOAL: 3 (3 tied with 1); FOULS: 9 (Brad Davis 2); OFFSIDES: 1 (Geoff Cameron 1); CORNER KICKS: 8 (Brad Davis 8); SAVES: 3 (Tally Hall 3)

Misconduct Summary:
PHI — Carlos Ruiz (caution; Reckless Foul) 20
HOU — Brad Davis (caution; Reckless Tackle) 22
PHI — Carlos Valdes (caution; Reckless Tackle) 44

Referee: Abiodun Okulaja
Referee’s Assistants: Chris Strickland; Adam Garner
4th Official: Andrew Chapin
Attendance: 19,385
Time of Game: 1:51
Weather: Clear-and-76-degrees

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Game #1 Preview: Philadelphia at Houston

Posted on 18 March 2011 by Breton Bonnette

The Union opens up the 2011 season on the road against a younger, different looking Dynamo squad. Eager to put their own new pieces to work, the Union hope to build a formidable defensive set-up and find away points to help complement what should be another great year at home.

Philadelphia Union (0-0-0) at Houston Dynamo (0-0-0)
Robertson Stadium, Houston, TX, 8:30PM EST

Projected Philadelphia Union Starting XI




Le Toux—————————————–Mapp


QUESTIONABLE: DF Juan Diego Gonzalez (L hip flexor strain); PROBABLE: MF Sebastien Le Toux (L ankle sprain)

Projected Houston Dynamo Starting XI

————————-T. Hall————————–

Freeman—–Boswell——–J. Taylor—–Chabala


—————-W. Bruin——–Oduro—————–

OUT: MF Colin Clark (L knee); Francisco Navas Cobo (R hamstring strain); DOUBTFUL: FW Brian Ching (R hamstring strain)

Game Notes:

The Union added some real firepower in the offseason – retooling an ailing defense from 2010 with Carlos Valdes, a surefire starter from day one, and veteran goalkeeper Faryd Mondragon. Brian Carroll, a former MLS Cup winner and standout midfielder, should anchor the middle of the field this year and act as an efficient connection in transition.

One of the biggest factors of the game will be the quality of the goalkeeper on each side. Replacing the underperforming pair of Seitz and Knighton this year will be Bundesliga vet Faryd Mondragon giving the Union a true rock on paper in between the posts. Carlos Ruiz has already come out and said to Marc Narducci of Philly.com that Faryd Mondragon is “the best goalkeeper in the league”. The Dynamo, however, lost their strongest presence on the field to psuedo-retirement (as he is now on a player/coach contract with DC United) and faces a year of inexperience in the net. Tally Hall, who has been promising in limited appearances, will get his chance in net for a new look Dynamo.

The Union should have Le Toux starting tomorrow despite a nagging injury. Mondragon tweeted earlier this week about some pain in his knee but there has been nothing pointing to him having to miss the opener. The Dynamo will most likely be missing their stud striker Brian Ching as he recovers from a hamstring strain. Ching probably could play but with the season just starting up, I would expect him to sit this one out for fear of an early setback.

The Union come into this opener with a 1-0-1 record vs. Dominic Kinnear and his Dynamo all-time. The win was an especially memorable one. Two highlight reel worthy plays were produced in the Union’s 3-2 victory over Houston. The first a walk the line stunner from Shea Salinas and the second a last gasp winner from Danny Mwanga to secure three points for the Union in their first win away from home.

Houston is undefeated in home openers so beware. They are 2-0-3 all time, beating defending champions from 2009 Real Salt Lake 2-1 last season. Robertson Stadium, however, is definitely not a fortress for the Dynamo as they registered a 6-6-3 record last season at home. Their new stadium (scheduled to open in 2012) can’t come soon enough for Dynamo fans.

Zac MacMath – the Union’s first round pick out of the 2011 SuperDraft – and second year midfielder Amobi Okugo have been called to participate with the U-20 USMNT in the 2011 CONCACAF Championship (March 28th to April 10th). With their two week exit, both MacMath and Okugo will miss the following games – March 26’s home opener vs. Vancouver, April 2’s away match in Los Angeles vs. Galaxy, April 7’s US Open Cup qualifier vs. DC United.

Slipping under the radar, Soccer by Ives came out and reported that the Union have finally put pen to paper on a contract for Michael Farfan’s twin brother Gabriel. Gabriel has been with the team all preseason and was expected to receive a contract. There has been no confirmation from the Union as of yet.

Time is running out! You have until MIDNIGHT tonight to submit your picks for the 2011 Union “Firsts” Contest. Get them in and be in the running for a $50 gift card to PhiladelphiaUnionStore.com.

We’ll be there tomorrow hopefully grabbing some pictures and keeping you up to date on all things happening on and off the field at Robertson Stadium!

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The wait is over, the Union’s 2011 schedule released

Posted on 10 February 2011 by Breton Bonnette

The wait is over. Major League Soccer has finally released the 2011 schedule (after a long wait). For the full schedule, head here! For those looking for individual and group tickets, they will go on sale next Wednesday, February 16th, at 10:00AM.

The Union will start and end the season away again but the good news is – Union fans won’t have to wait a decade to see their team at home again after a home opener. It was obviously special circumstances but a more balanced schedule awaits. Aside from the Union’s opener vs. Houston on March 19th and the home opener at PPL Park vs. Vancouver on March 26th, there are some dates that undoubtedly stand out:


New York Red Bulls vs. Philadelphia Union (PPL)
Saturday, April 9th, 2011, 7:00PM

Nationally televised on ESPN2, Thierry Henry, Rafa Marquez, and Juan Agudelo will head down the Turnpike a week after the Union get back from the visiting Beckham and Donovan at the Home Depot Center.

Los Angeles vs. Philadelphia Union (PPL)
Wednesday, May 11th, 2011, 7:30PM

Surprisingly, a midweek run-in with Beckham, Juan Pablo Angel, and Landycakes is the first of 5 midweek regular season ties on the schedule.

Philadelphia Union vs. D.C. United (RFK)
Saturday, July 2nd, 2011, 7:30PM

If they aren’t Baltimore United yet, the Union will get to exact revenge (hopefully) on what was one of their most uninspired and disgusting away performances of last season, a 2-0 loss at hands of the worst of the league in 2010 D.C. United.

Other tidbits:

July will be a tough month for the Zolos. Trips to D.C., San Jose, New England, and Seattle await a week after each other before returning home to face the defending champs, Colorado, at PPL Park.

Moreno visits along with the rest of the Goats on June 25th. Chris Seitz and FC Dallas on August 13th. Whereas, former Crew member Brian Carroll revisits Crew Stadium and the Nordecke a week later on August 20th.

The last game of the year will bring a reverse of last year’s season finale – a visit to Red Bull Arena on October 20th.

There are 28 Saturday games out of 34 (82% of all regular season games). It will be a year of more midweek international friendlies. The re-established reserve league generally plays the day after the “main event”.

The Red Bulls will feature on ESPN2 a whopping 8 times. Both the Galaxy and Seattle are next 5 appearances a piece on the ESPN network.

Recap of nationally televised games:

3 – ESPN/ESPN2 (Sat, Apr 9 vs RBNY, Thurs, Sept 29 @ DCU, Thurs, Oct 20 @ RBNY)

2 – Galavision/Telefutura (Sat, May 21 vs CHI, Sun, Aug 28 vs. CHV)

Expect more dates to be announced as negotiations continue with other potential national broadcast partners continue. The Union’s local television broadcast schedule has yet to be released.

Which dates do you look most forward to? How about which road trip?

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Game #27 Preview: Houston at Philadelphia

Posted on 01 October 2010 by Breton Bonnette

After the most convincing win of the season, the Union travelled to Colorado to take on a Rapids squad deeply entrenched in a battle for the playoffs. Unfortunately, they countered one of the highest highs with a low capable of dashing Union supporters hopes for postseason action. The Union, however, aren’t mathematically eliminated from the playoff race although it’s virtually impossible for them to grab that last spot. Regardless, Houston awaits, looking to gain momentum heading into the 2011 season after their 2010 campaign fell short of everyone’s expectations. The new-look Dynamo sit second-to-last in the Western Conference (but Chivas USA has a game in hand) and present the Union with an opportunity to push for double digit wins in their last homestand.

Houston Dynamo at Philadelphia Union
Saturday, October 2, 2010, 4:00PM
PPL Park, Chester, PA

Houston Dynamo Probable Starters (7-14-5)





OUT: MF Colin Clark (L knee surgery); MF Anthony Obodai (L knee meniscus); DOUBTFUL: GK Pat Onstad (concussion); QUESTIONABLE: GK Tally Hall (R ankle sprain)

Philadelphia Union Probable Starters (7-13-6)


Williams——Califf————Orozco F.——–Harvey



—————–Le Toux———Moreno——————-

QUESTIONABLE: MF Eduardo Coudet (R calf strain); FW Danny Mwanga (L shoulder sprain); PROBABLE: MF Stefani Miglioranzi (L shin contusion)

Just because both teams lead their respective conferences in goals allowed, one shouldn’t expect a goalfest. The potential is there but the Union have shown themselves to be formidable in the back at PPL Park. Brian Ching may not be as silky smooth on the ball as Colorado’s Omar Cummings but he has the ability to kill off a team single-handedly, especially when you run him up front with speedsters like Dominic Oduro and Joseph Ngwenya.

Speed kills with Houston so the Union flanks must be wary of Corey Ashe or rookie Danny Cruz. Regardless of who plays for the Dynamo, they need to be watched. There’s two sides to the scenario, however. Cruz and Ashe are both known as defensive liabilities.

The Union could be facing a Houston academy product in his first MLS start if back up keeper Tally Hall can’t go for the Dynamo. Regular netminder Pat Onstad is out injured with Hall hampered as well and Tyler Deric is next in line on the depth chart. Should be interesting to see how he deals with the vocal presence of the River End in his first Major League Soccer start.

Many Union fans are wondering if and when Jack McInerney will get a little more time on the pitch. Sure, he has almost everyone of the Union’s “consolation” goals this season but he scores and that finish vs. Colorado was pure class. Another guy fans are clamoring for – Shea Salinas.

Before Wednesday night, it had been a little over a solid month since the defense gave up more than one goal in a game. It was also looking like Brad Knighton had to no continued competition from Chris Seitz for the starting keeper position. Both were shot down as the Union fell 4-1. Knighton will remain – even after a soft rebound led to a Rapids goal – and the defense should use this run of games at home to reset themselves.

Quote of the Day: Hackworth’s curt statement, “That was not our team” after the 4-1 drubbing at the hands of Colorado.

Prediction: The Union will have played three games in the last week after Houston but the PPL Park effect still prevails. Let’s call it 2-1 Union.

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Revolution Friday Update: 8/13/2010

Posted on 13 August 2010 by sstoehrst

This week’s hot news item is the first visit to Foxboro from Steve Ralston after he took over the assistant coaching job in Houston. An “MLS Original,” Ralston wore the captain’s armband for two years in New England and owns an array of MLS and team records. He will be honored in a pre-kickoff ceremony on Saturday night.

During the Revolution’s historic run of success in the last decade, including eight straight MLS Cup playoff appearances, four MLS Cup Finals, a SuperLiga title and a US Open Cup title, Steve was an essential cog in a talented New England midfield. His almost telepathic understanding with Shalrie Joseph and Taylor Twellman created scores of great memories for the fans in the Fort, and despite the fact that he’s now coaching with the enemy he will always be a loved and respected member of the Revolution family.

New England reached a mutual agreement to terminate the contract of Senegalese midfielder Joseph Niouky on Wednesday. They didn’t cite any specific reasoning behind the deal, but did stress that this move was not made with the intention of opening up a roster spot for player acquisition.

This is a puzzling move at best. It can be lauded in a simple sense, as Niouky was rarely more than a waste of space on the pitch despite starting eleven of the Revs’ first twelve matches this season. His composure was horrible, calling his passes “erratic” could have been complimentary and he accumulated cards and suspensions with reckless abandon. When examined from the pure standpoint of what he brings to the table, cutting Niouky is a move that should have been made months ago.

That said, cutting him after the guaranteed contract deadline and apparently deciding not to utilize the roster spot opened by his departure is baffling. By week three everyone and their mother already knew signing him was a disaster; would it not have been a much better idea to cut him loose before July 1st and avoid having to buy him out? Furthermore, the Revolution have failed to name a full eighteen-man squad for numerous matches this campaign, so removing a body from the roster without some form of replacement seems like an unnecessary gamble.

The injury report released today indicates that Marko Perovic will be fit to start against Houston, which is phenomenal news. Revolution fans should be very interested to see how he interacts with new signing Ilija Stolica in his first MLS start; developing some chemistry between the pair could prove crucial to New England’s hopes of a playoff push.

Kevin Alston may also be available, though he suffered a setback on Thursday that must have Nicol worried. Jason Griffiths should also be available for the first time in a month after suffering a hamstring strain back on July 10th. Despite participating in drills and full-speed training again, Zak Boggs still isn’t allowed to head the ball and won’t be featuring on Saturday as he continues to recover from a concussion.

Kheli Dube, Nico Colaluca, and Edgaras Jankauskas will not be available.

Kick-off for the Revolution versus the Houston Dynamo is scheduled for 8 PM at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, Massachusetts.

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Revs to Face Dynamo, Honor Ralston

Posted on 12 August 2010 by sstoehrst

A familiar face returns to Gillette Stadium on Saturday as Steve Ralston will be honored pre-kickoff for his service as a Revolution player.

(Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

Unfortunately, he’ll be wearing the colors of the opposing side. Ralston was recently hired as the Houston Dynamo’s assistant coach, replacing long-time second-in-command John Spencer. “Rally” is the MLS all-time leader in assists (135), starts (372) and minutes played (143), having joined the Revolution in 2002 after six seasons with the now-defunct Tampa Bay Mutiny.

The sentimentality won’t last past the opening kickoff. Over the last decade or so the Revolution and the Dynamo have cultivated a healthy rivalry, including two meetings in the MLS Cup Final (Houston won both, in ’06 and ’07) and a SuperLiga final in 2008 (the Revolution won on penalties).

Entering Saturday’s contest, New England is riding a streak of fine form, posting a 5-0-2 record and a +6 goal differential in their last seven matches. The key to their success has been defense; despite only scoring eight goals in that span they’ve conceded just two, and the chemistry between Darrius Barnes, Cory Gibbs and Emmanuel Osei has served to frustrate opponents for the last month and a half.

Houston, on the other hand, is suffering through a slump. They’ve gone just 2-4-4 and their last ten fixtures and remain winless in all nine of their previous league games. Last week’s performance against Seattle was deplorable and even coach Dominic Kinnear was at a loss to find any positives in the contest other than the inspired play of young goalkeeper Tally Hall.

Steve Nicol has already announced that he plans to start Serbian newcomer Ilija Stolica for the first time on Saturday, and Marko Perovic is reportedly fit again after missing last week due to a calf strain. It will be interesting to see how the duo interact, with Stolica likely tasked as the target man up front, holding the ball and bringing others into the play. Perovic will be his most common partner in this scheme, making runs off the ball and looking for the space to continue his blistering offensive form.

Saturday’s match is a statement game for the Revs. Despite their recent woes Houston is still a team with quality all over the pitch, and New England went a long stretch earlier this season without showing any sort of resilience in the face of superior opposition. Expect this to be a tightly-contested affair that will indicate the high-water mark of the Revs’ resurgence; either they’ll get a result and continue to force their way into the playoff picture, or they will crumble, and the Revolution faithful can probably start counting down the days until next season.

Lineup Forecast


Reis; Osei, Barnes, Gibbs, Sinovic; Nyassi, Joseph, Phelan, Tierney; Perovic; Stolica

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The Good, The Bad, The Red, The Dead

Posted on 04 August 2010 by dkarell

This past week, with the spotlight on Texas, the Red Bull’s players put on a show. In the 2010 MLS All Star Game last Wednesday, Juan Pablo Angel had a solid 45 minutes in the first half before being substituted, and Thierry Henry made his MLS debut last Saturday in the match against the Houston Dynamo. In this 13th edition of the column, we will focus on the 2-2 draw with Houston, as well as the recent signing of Rafael Marquez.

The Good: With Thierry Henry and Juan Pablo Angel finally together, the Red Bull’s attack was more dangerous than seen in quite some time. Henry assisted on both of Angel’s goals, and should have had two of his own, though his finishing was off all day. Expect to see plenty of goals with these two playing as strikers and providers for each other and their teammates. Also, the Red Bulls signed an unprecedented third designated player, Mexico captain Rafa Marquez, to a three and a half year contract, through the 2013 season. Marquez will shore up any potential chinks in the back line, and will most likely be played by coach Hans Backe in a defensive midfield role.

The Bad: Despite being up a man for the whole second half of the match against Houston, the Red Bulls were unable to hold their lead, or add to it. Juan Pablo Angel’s goal was a fantastic strike, but after that, despite close chances, the Red Bulls were unable to put any away, and they missed out on picking up more points on the Eastern Conference leading Columbus Crew, who lost over the weekend to Chivas USA. The Red Bulls are currently in second place, down seven points from the Crew, with a game in hand.

The Red: Before I wrote this article, I was going to say that the backline, and defensive focus was a big issue recently, but I think that Rafa Marquez will help shore that up. His leadership should help raise the games of his teammates, and hopefully he will provide the squad with plenty of possession. Hopefully this is also the end of the Carl Robinson experiment. He has been oft injured, and when playing, not looking very good on offense or defense. He is usually invisible during matches.

The Dead: Clint Mathis today announced his retirement today, saying that this weekend’s game between his Los Angeles Galaxy and Real Madrid will be his final match. Mathis was one of the first American super star soccer players, and his career in New York was nothing short of superb. Mathis played five seasons with the Metrostars/Red Bulls, finishing with 45 goals in all competitions, including five in one game against the Dallas Burn in 2000. The Red Bulls have announced they plan to make a tribute to his career.

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