So this is it. The beginning of the 2014 MLS season. We’ve got your favorite team in orange, Houston Dynamo, taking on their Eastern Conference rivals, the New England Revolution, and they are playing in…well who cares what they wear, the good guys are the ones wearing orange.
It’s been a long 13 weeks since the the Dynamo trudged off the grass at Sporting Park in Kansas City, and it’s time to move on. Yes they were close to a third consecutive MLS Final, but it was not to be. So now it’s time to concentrate on this year and take back the Cup that has been out of the Bayou City since 2007.
If you haven’t been following the Dynamo since that Eastern Conference Final defeat, my main man Hal Kaiser has been writing about all the news you need to know in his Dynamo 2014 preview package.
Make sure you also check out the Tailgate Options.
Now, on to the main event. The moment you’ve all been waiting for. The first preview of the 2014 Dynamo season!
New England Revolution: (0-0-0), 0 points
I always think the Revolution want to destroy the Dynamo whenever they play each other. That’s probably because the Dynamo beat them in back-to-back MLS Cup Finals in 2006, 2007. Regardless, the Revolution have come a long way since then. They’ve been through a rebuilding phase and made the playoffs in 2013, for the first time since 2009, while finishing third in the Eastern Conference standings. The Revolution are also the only team in MLS that has managed a winning record in Houston.
Last year, these teams tied the season series (1-1-1), with both teams winning on the road and another stalemate coming at Gillette Stadium. It will be interesting to see how these teams come out to start the season. The Revolution are battling an injury bug which keeps key starters Andrew Farrell and Lee Ngyuen out of this match while Saer Sene and Jose Goncalves are questionable, although indicatives are that Goncalves will play. Nevertheless, the Revolution key off-season additions, Teal Bunbury and Daigo Kobayashi, are ready to go. Combined with the exciting young Diego Fagundez and Kelyn Rowe, they make for a potentially potent attack. Jose Goncalves and A.J. Soares are back to keep things in order along the backline.
Houston Dynamo (0-0-0), 0 points
Dom Kinnear’s men are ready to go and prove the critics wrong once again. While many see the improvements in other Eastern Conference teams and the relative lack of off-season additions by the Dynamo as a negative (one publication picked the Dynamo to finish 9th out of 10 teams), the Dynamo are out to prove that continuity and consistency make for a strong team.
The spotlight will be on newcomer David Horst in the middle of the defense as well as the forward tandem of Will Bruin and Giles Barnes. However, consistency is indeed the order of the day as it is likely that 9 of the starters from the opening match day of 2013 will start tonight. The Dynamo are difficult to beat in front of their home crowd and BBVA Compass stadium is likely to be a loud, rocking sell out tonight.
New England: Andrew Farrell (out), Lee Ngyuen (out), Andy Dorman (questionable), Jose Goncalves (questionable), Saer Sene (questionable), Chris Tierney (questionable)
Houston: Warren Creavalle (out), Servando Carrasco (out), Eric Brunner (out)
PROBABLE STARTING LINEUPS
New England: GK – Bobby Shuttleworth; Def – Kevin Alston, A.J. Soares, Jose Goncalves, O’Brian Woodbine; Mid – Scott Caldwell, Kelyn Rowe, Daigo Kobayashi, Patrick Mullins, Diego Fagundez; Fwd – Teal Bunbury
Houston: GK – Tally Hall; Def – Corey Ashe, Jermaine Taylor, David Horst, Kofi Sarkodie; Mid – Brad Davis, Ricardo Clark, Boniek Garcia, Tony Cascio; Fwd – Giles Barnes, Will Bruin
The Dynamo win 2-0 behind a brace from Giles Barnes and late game heroics by Tally Hall.
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