Join Now  | 
Home About Contact Us Privacy & Security Advertise
Soccer America Daily Soccer World Daily Special Edition Around The Net Soccer Business Insider College Soccer Reporter Youth Soccer Reporter Soccer on TV Soccer America Classifieds Game Report
Paul Gardner: SoccerTalk Soccer America Confidential Youth Soccer Insider World Cup Watch
RSS Feeds Archives Manage Subscriptions Subscribe
Order Current Issue Subscribe Manage My Subscription Renew My Subscription Gift Subscription
My Account Join Now
Tournament Calendar Camps & Academies Soccer Glossary Classifieds
MLS Cup '06: Soccer America Report Card
November 12th, 2006 10:44PM
Subscribe to Soccer America Confidential

MOST READ

MOST COMMENTED

HOUSTON 1 NEW ENGLAND 1 (Houston wins 4-3 on penalties.)

PLAYER RATINGS
(1-low; 5-average; 10-high)

New England: Reis 6, Heaps 5, Parkhurst 6, John 6, Dorman 5, Ralston 6, Hernandez 5, Joseph 6, Franchino 6, Noonan 5, Twellman 6. Subs: Smith 6, Dempsey 6, Larentowicz NR.

Houston: Onstad 6, Barrett 6, Robinson 6, Cochrane 6, Waibel 6, Serioux 6, Davis 5, Mullan 5, DeRosario 6, Ching 7, Dalglish 4. Subs: Moreno 4, Gray 6, Holden NR.

GAME ANALYSIS

Both teams were deprived of vital starters. Adrian Serioux filled for suspended Houston midfielder Ricardo Clark. Revs attacker Clint Dempsey conceded his place to Andy Dorman, with Revs coach Steve Nicol using Daniel Hernandez and Shalrie Joseph in the middle.

The Revs lacked precision in the final pass and for much of the match couldn't keep possession. Joseph won numerous balls but few of them were smartly exploited. Dorman triggered several promising sequences, including a wide ball to Joey Franchino for a perfect cross that Taylor Twellman headed strongly but too close to Houston keeper Pat Onstad, who saved it. Dorman also pushed forward up the middle and fired a shot that was deflected for a corner.

Houston nearly scored in the first minute, when midfielder Brad Davis raced to the back post and shot into the side netting from a sharp angle. The Dynamo controlled most of the play for the first 20 minutes; the rest of the first half was even and not particularly crisp. Dwayne DeRosario fired a low, first-time shot that Matt Reis pushed past the near post late in the half, after Onstad's reflex save thwarted Twellman, and Brian Mullan fired way over the bar from the edge of the box to squander good service from Wade Barrett.

Houston changed from its traditional 4-4-2 late in the first half, pushing into a 3-5-2 to combat New England more effectively in midfield. Stalemate ensued. Dempsey's insertion for Dorman in the 62nd minute livened up the game at both ends; Onstad stopped a shot from Steve Ralston and Dempsey just failed to reach a ball Pat Noonan drove within two yards of the far post. Matt Reis stood his ground to block a point-blank shot that reached Barrett after Brian Ching had whiffed on it.

Nicol had sent on Khano Smith early in the second half yet Houston kept his rampaging runs up the left flank fairly well contained until the 112th minute, when he came inside and played a great through ball that Twellman let bounce off his ankle before firing it low just inside the far post. Right from the kickoff, Mullan pushed up the right and his cross deflected off Avery John and Ching peeled away from Jay Heaps to head it in.




No comments yet.

Sign in to leave a comment. Don't have an account? Join Now




AUTHORS

ARCHIVES
FOLLOW SOCCERAMERICA

Recent Soccer America Confidential
Bruce Arena makes the USA fun to watch    
Before Friday's game against Honduras, I wondered whether the U.S. national team would bring joy to ...
Michael Bradley: USA prepared 'to tilt the bar in our favor' early against Honduras    
As they train in San Jose for a crucial Hexagonal match against Honduras on Friday, the ...
Next move for Real Salt Lake is the most crucial in a decade    
The history of RSL is one of remarkable stability -- just three head coaches since starting ...
U.S. roster announcement: Bruce Arena's return marked by a singleness of purpose    
Multiply the left-back debate with a few more positions each with several candidates and you'll have ...
Quakes encouraged but not giddy after impressive opener    
Four seasons without playoffs has left the fervent fans in San Jose discouraged, but a ray ...
MLS 1-22: Ranking the teams on the eve of a new season    
Eight different teams have played in the last four MLS Cup finals and last year, 2015 ...
Random thoughts as the MLS season draws near    
The 2017 MLS season starts next Friday, March 3, more than a month earlier than the ...
Walker Zimmerman joins the U.S. centerback pool with solid performance    
Two FC Dallas centerbacks were summoned to the first U.S, camp of 2017 and after Matt ...
Rare USA golazo inspires some hope    
One swallow doesn't make a summer, but the USA delivered something impressive with its goal in ...
Greg Garza, soccer wanderer, finds place to start anew, again    
A long voyage to several continents has led U.S. international Greg Garza to the MLS startup ...
>> Soccer America Confidential Archives