Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Houston Dynamo drop 2-0 decision to Kansas City in U.S.Open Cup

Photo by Robert Kelly
Copyright 2017, All Rights Reserved
By Jennifer Edwards
Special Correspondent for TexSport Publications
Copyright 2017, All Rights Reserved

HOUSTON, TEXAS (June 28, 2017) The Houston Dynamo hosted Sporting Kansas City in the Round of 16 of the 2017 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup at BBVA Compass Stadium on Wednesday, June 28, 2017. The game was the first of a double header for Houston soccer fans to enjoy.  The second match had the Houston Dash hosting the visiting Boston Breakers.

The first 20 minutes of the match was dominated by the Dynamo; who were unable to capitalize on their numerous chances to score. A yellow card was issued to the Houston’s Eric Bird in the 23th minute. The Dynamo’s offense continued to beat against Kansas City and the Kansas City goalkeeper, Tim Melia, who made some heroic saves to keep the score at 0-0 leading into halftime. Sporting Kansas City defense showed their might while fending off three missed goal attempts from Brazilian midfielder Alex,  A yellow card was issued in 62 minute to Memo Rodriguez for tripping. In a weird turn of events, the card was issued and play was resumed unbeknownst to Ellis who was talking to coach with his back to the play.. According to the referee, talking to your coach while a play is happening is within the rules, but that one play changed the momentum of the game. Wilmer Cabrera stated that the play, “Changed the momentum of the game.” during his post game press conference. A verbal warning was also issued to Dynamo coach, Wilmer Cabrera, by the on-pitch referee for extending too far out of the designated coaching area while arguing the play. 

Following this play, the Dynamo substituted in Ruben Luna for Alex, who the crowd cheered loudly for in their appreciation of his service to his team. As an elder member of the squad, Cabrera stated he made the substitution to allow the younger players time and exposure to the opponent. He also stated that the Dynamo knew that Sporting KC was bringing their first team minus their national team callups. The Dynamo understood that placing the younger players on the pitch gave them great exposure but the objective was clear, the Dynamo wanted to win against a team that is very strong and have been playing for a few seasons.  

After several Dynamo substitutions, the offense could not find the footing they displayed in the first half of the game. The second half was clearly dominated by Sporting Kansas City’s offense. The second and final goal was scored by Fernandez in the 90th minute of play solidified the win by the visiting team. After traditional handshakes post game, the Man of the Match was Memo Rodriguez.

After the game Cabrera stated that the Dynamo understood that Sporting Kansas City put it’s first team on the pitch against very young and promising Dynamo players. The loss marks the end of the road for the Dynamo in their quest for the Lamar Hunt Cup. 

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