Monday Kicker: Crew Still On Top; Houston Still Winless

Monday Kicker: Crew Still On Top; Houston Still Winless

  • Posted by Drew Epperley
  • On May 5, 2008
  • 4 Comments

A weekend that saw fewer goals but enough drama to keep us interested is over. Week six is in the books and a few things remain as they were at the start of the weekend. The eastern conference is still very close at the top, while the western side is starting to heat up.

Only 14 goals in week number six. Down almost half from the previous couple of weeks here in Major League Soccer. First time I think all season we had two 0-0 draws in one weekend.

We saw some good, some bad and some very ugly this weekend as well.

Columbus Crew 2 -1 Kansas City Wizards:

  • Kudos for the Crew staying on top of things against KC. I really kept that for the most part they dominated this match. The two goals came due to some strong efforts and some poor defending on KC’s part.
  • William Hesmer is really emerging as a top keeper in this league. Aside from the PK from Claudio Lopez, Hesmer really never looked like he was going to give up anything against KC.
  • The Wizards defense again laid an egg here, the continue to look a bit disorganized and confused when they face clubs with strong wing play and crafty strikers like Alejandro Moreno.
  • What was Kevin Hartman doing on that Robbie Roger’s goal? He was in no-man’s land and that caused his defender (Chance Myers) to get a bit confused by his coming out I think. It wasn’t a rookie mistake on Myers but more so a lack of judgment by Hartman.
  • Nice to see Rogers having a decent start to this season here. His third goal of the season makes me believe that he is finally showing up here this season for the Crew.
  • The red card to Roger Espinoza was very justifiable. Just a stupid thing to fling an elbow like that. At least for the Wizards it didn’t make that much of a difference.
  • Claudio Lopez still seems like he is a one-man show for the Wizards on offense. Someone has to step up and help him out.
  • Where’s the love in Columbus though these days? The league’s best side only is getting around 10k for the game against the Wizards. It surely wasn’t a weather related issue for the poor attendance, so what else was going on in Columbus over the weekend? OSU graduation? OSU football players picking their noses? What? I’d like to know.

Chicago Fire 3 – 0 New England Revolution:

  • Well, my pick of the Revs going back to the MLS Cup really took another beating on Saturday thanks to the Fire (again!).
  • Give credit where it is due, the Fire once again took advantage of a New England defense that just seems confused beyond all ends against the Fire.
  • New England really never looked like they had the chances to compete in this one either.
  • Countdown to Taylor Twellman’s return has to be on in full force right now for Revs fans. At least Steve Ralston came on as a sub in this one, that’s a good sign for the coming weeks.
  • I have to say, John Thorrington is really beginning to impress me these days. Aside from the two Beckham goals this weekend, I think Thorrington’s was my next favorite.
  • Don’t look now but the Fire are quietly the league’s best defense here this season. They haven’t given up more than one goal in a game all year. In fact they’ve only given up 3 goals all season. Whatever Denis Hamlet is doing is definitely working.
  • Speaking of what Hamlet is doing, or rather not doing is messing with a good thing. Still no Wilham Conde in the lineup. Honestly, that works for me. Not because of what he did in the offseason but because you really can’t mess with the flow to play a guy, even if he could be your best defender. Hamlet is doing the “if it isn’t broke, then don’t fix it” kind of mentality right now. With three goals against all season, its working well I think.
  • Hat tip to rookie Stephen King for his first career goal. Nice follow up on a Chad Barrett miss.
  • What can New England do here to correct things? Obviously get healthy for one but too they cannot give up that kind of space to anyone, even teams with weaker offenses like San Jose.

Houston Dynamo 0 – 0 Chivas USA:

  • Loads of action, loads of cards, and no goals. I think if I were a Chivas fan I would feel very lucky to get away with this one with only a draw.
  • Houston still can’t find the back of the net. I think it may be time for Dominic Kinnear to tell Dwayne De Rosario to play striker regardless of what he thinks about playing the position. They clearly need him shooting more on goal because eventually he will find the back of the net.
  • Brad Guzan finally looked like the Guzan that was going to transfer to Celtic or Aston Villa here this past weekend. Nice saves all around that probably boosted his confidence a bit.
  • Where’s the love here, nice cards in this one including a red to Claudio Suarez for his goal-denying tackle. Honestly, a smart play on Suarez’s part.
  • A very chippy game though because of those cards. Clearly both teams are frustrated with their current run of play in recent weeks.
  • Very nice crowd (20k) in Houston. You could tell they’ve missed having home games here this season.
  • Houston is still winless here on the season. Wow, six weeks in too. No one saw this coming.

LA Galaxy 2 – 2 Real Salt Lake:

  • Probably the more entertaining game of the weekend. Goals all over the place in the first half. Nice goals too from both teams.
  • I honestly can’t decide which David Beckham goal will win goal of the week here. Seriously, its a toss up for me. The free kick tied the game so it will probably get the nod in the end but the first one was a thing of beauty. That probably made his coach say that sexy football is finally in LA.
  • The disallowed goal against Kenny Deuchar late in the first half was a very, very iffy call I think. They said he was offsides but looking at the replay I have to disagree. Then again from the camera angle it was a very close call but I think he was onside.
  • I really though RSL played well in this one though. They looked like the better side until Beckham started shooting. Even after the first half ended and the second began, they looked better than the Galaxy. Big surprise though.
  • Nick Rimando may be to blame for the weak positioning on the second Beckham goal but in the second half he came up huge on a number of Galaxy chances.
  • No Landon Donovan goals in this one, maybe he has cooled off.
  • Steve Cronin had a couple nice saves but I have to still say he is not a great starter here in MLS. His positioning is very weak and he is a big reason (along with the defense) for giving up all of these goals this season.
  • Nice crowd in RSL. Too bad it wasn’t played in the new stadium. You have to believe that MLS is in a love/hate stage right now with these highlights from this game. You love to see the highlights all over the world but you hate to see those god-awful football lines and logos on the field.

FC Dallas 0 – 0 San Jose Earthquakes:

  • Love, love, love the atmosphere at Buck Shaw Stadium. Its a cozy little venue that works for me. It did however feel very college-like though but I think I will take it over the cozy KC venue right now for these temporary homes.
  • The Quakes looked better at their real home. Some nice chances against Dallas but still their finishing is terrible.
  • Dallas had some nice chances as well but I am really starting to believe that they will have to go out and sign another striker in the summer transfer window.
  • Nice defense by Dallas. Another shutout and now the Hoops have given up only one goal in the last four games. Pretty impressive when you think about how much we questioned this defense to start the season.
  • On the flip-side, the Hoops have been shutout in two straight matches.
  • San Jose again had chances but only one shot on goal.
  • Give credit to Dallas and game-time starter Anthony Wallace (who made his second career start) for stepping up in this one.
  • San Jose held some good possession in this one, which leads me to believe that eventually they will build up some nice offense once a striker steps up for them.
  • Neither keeper was really tested all that much in this one but Joe Cannon did have a pair of nice saves in this one.

Colorado Rapids 2 – 0 DC United:

  • Yeah, so much for United’s come back here in this season. Their defense looked ugly in this one and the Rapids took full advantage of it.
  • And so much again for the hot seat of Fernando Clavijo’s job status. After a couple bad efforts out of his club he finally saw them put together a nice 90 minute effort against DC. Then again DC has been largely terrible in Denver in recent years so maybe this was just what the doctor ordered for his side.
  • Nice to see former DC players Christian Gomez and Facundo Erpen play a part in the win yesterday. Gomez set up both goals and Erpen put home one of them.
  • After a nice effort a week ago, DC’s main man Marcello Gallardo laid a big fat egg in this one. I forgot he was even out there at times.
  • Its not just the dismal defense in DC, their offense has largely been terrible and inconsistent here.
  • Where was the crowd yesterday though in Colorado? The Mexican wrestler’s mask promotion not good enough for you all?
  • Josh Rollins

    <blockquote>Where&rsquo;s the love in Columbus though these days? The league&rsquo;s best side only is getting around 10k for the game against the Wizards. It surely wasn&rsquo;t a weather related issue for the poor attendance, so what else was going on in Columbus over the weekend? OSU graduation? OSU football players picking their noses? What? I&rsquo;d like to know.</blockquote><br />
    <br />
    To be honest, Drew… I really think the weather did play a part in this week. It was windy and rainy all day here on Saturday, it just happened to stop before the match. There were huge black clouds just kind of hanging over the city all day, too.<br />
    <br />
    That and people here don't care about the Crew sadly. They look on them with the same disdain they have for The Columbus Destroyers. It's sad.

  • Josh Rollins

    Where’s the love in Columbus though these days? The league’s best side only is getting around 10k for the game against the Wizards. It surely wasn’t a weather related issue for the poor attendance, so what else was going on in Columbus over the weekend? OSU graduation? OSU football players picking their noses? What? I’d like to know.

    To be honest, Drew… I really think the weather did play a part in this week. It was windy and rainy all day here on Saturday, it just happened to stop before the match. There were huge black clouds just kind of hanging over the city all day, too.

    That and people here don’t care about the Crew sadly. They look on them with the same disdain they have for The Columbus Destroyers. It’s sad.

  • Cannon Girl

    Am I dreaming or did you actually compliment my Joe?

  • Cannon Girl

    Am I dreaming or did you actually compliment my Joe?