Thursday, April 05, 2007

Dynamo look to keep MLS in the Champions' Cup

Houston Dynamo vs. Pachuca CF
9:30pm ET
TV: Fox Soccer Channel

All hope MLS fans have of seeing one of their own represent CONCACAF in the 2007 Club World Cup come down to the Houston Dynamo. However, before they get there, they will need to get past two quality Mexican sides. The good news for the Dynamo, they are going down to Mexico up two goals. This should allow them to play with some confidence and force Pachuca into a very offensive posture. The bad news is Pachuca plays best in a very offensive posture.

Houston has a strong backline, but they will need the midfield to do the heavy lifting tonight. If they can disrupt and distribute, Houston will win the series. With that in mind, Ricardo Clark might just turn out to be the most important Dynamo on the pitch tonight.

Update: Clark is out due to injury meaning Kelly Gray will need to have the game of his life.

Clark has this great ability to get right in the passing lane, steal the ball and quickly sling it out to Brad Davis or Brian Mullan. With Pachuca pushing forward, Paul Dalglish and Dwayne De Rosario (if healthy) will need to quickly move and balls from Davis or Mullan towards goal. If they give Pachuca even a few moments.

Houston needs to make the runs and force fouls or corners. It is from these dead balls that Houston will get their best chances. Pachuca is bad at defending them and the Dynamo are great at exploiting such badness.

The Dynamo need to watch out for Andres Chitiva and Christian Gimenez who have the ability to quickly erase their two goal deficit. Chitiva is an excellent midfielder and loves to run at people. If he let into the area, bad things will happen and more then likely those bad things will involve Gimenez.

This game should be just as good, if not better, then the DC-Chivas match. Houston will play a bit cautious, but since a goal will probably be enough to insure a victory in the series, they will not just sit back and take it. Also, as time goes on, look for the physical play to increase.

Prediction: Houston 1-1 Pachuca
Houston wins series 3-1

By the way, if you are in Houston, there is an official viewing party at the Bull & Bear Tavern and Eatery. I know nothing about this, but since it is listed on the Dynamo site, thought I would pass it along. The Bull & Bear is located at 11980 Westheimer, Suite A, Houston, TX 77077. (281) 496-6655

Labels: , , ,


Post a Comment

<< Home