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Houston mauls Arabe Unido, 5-1, in CONCACAF Champions League


The last time the Houston Dynamo faced Panamanian side Arabe Unido, there were five red cards issued in the match. On Tuesday, red cards weren't raining. It was only raining Dynamo goals.

Houston had four different players score goals, including Stuart Holden, who netted a brace in the Dynamo's 5-1 thumping of Arabe Unido at Robertson Stadium on Tuesday night.

The Dynamo opened the scoring in the 11th minute when Eddie Robinson pounced on a goalkeeping blunder to make it 1-0 for the home team. Cam Weaver made it 2-0 in the 50th, and a 56th-minute red card against Arabe Unido opened things up for the MLS club, which tallied three goals in the final 20 minutes, including two from Holden.

The victory moved Houston ahead of Arabe Unido in their Champions League group. Pachuca leads the group with 10 points after its 4-0 win vs. Isidro Metapan on Tuesday. Houston is tied with Arabe Unido on seven points, but leads on head-to-head results.

In other CONCACAF Champions League action, the Puerto Rico Islanders tied Deportivo Saprissa, 1-1, in Puerto Rico on Tuesday night. The result helps the Columbus Crew, which now sits two points clear of Saprissa for second place in its group with a match in hand. Columbus faces Cruz Azul tonight at Crew Stadium.

What did you think of Houston's performance? Starting to believe that the Dynamo can make a strong run in Champions League play? Glad to see Puerto Rico help the Crew with a result?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. Funny how every one says that Kinnear couldn’t impose his system on the Nats. Dunga with Brazil imposed his system and they are the best team in the world right now. Kinnear’s system would be a welcoming one for the USMNT. There are plenty of players to fit that system, only BB has his mind set on his lineup already. A Kinnear system would also be a young players’ system, one that showcases American athleticism and speed.

  2. Trivia question: If Dom were to take over the USMNT, would he be the first US MNT coach to also have played for the US MNT? And if not, who is/are the other/others?

    I honestly think that Dom would be a success anywhere he goes, but I also think he is a guy who is more suited to a club team than a national program. He’s a laid-back guy who, ironically, has icewater in his veins. He’s a player’s manager as long as the player gives 100 percent. You don’t, you’re out.

    He develops players to a specific system, however, in national team play, you kind of have to walk the other way don’t you, tailoring the system to the various styles the players get in their club environment? I have no doubt Dom could do that, but don;t think his success doing one means for a fact that he’ll success doing the other.

    As a true-orange Dynamo fan, I want him here forever. But I know he values national play for players and would jump at the chance to lead the US MNT. He believes in national play adamantly.

  3. I have to agree with Scott-in-Houston. Dom’s strength is found in his system and in building a cadre of players that fit that system. Consistency is key. The player pool is too fluid at the National level, making it difficult to develop the chemistry that is so essential to the success of his teams. I think he will have his best impact by continuing to coach at the club level, preferably in the MLS.

  4. Personally, I want Dom to stay here. But if he were to leave Spencer would be a good replacement. I think the debate about Dom’s ability to lead the national team is good. On the positive, he would bring a more entertaining and attacking style and would definitely please the fans who want to see a true attacking CM or a diamond formation. On the other hand, his player selections would probably piss people off.

    Dempsey would assuredly be put in the FWD slots and you would definitely have a hold up Ching type FWD playing all the time. Landon/Torres/Bennie would probably play CAM with Holden out right and a guy like Rogers/Brad Davis out left. Jones/Clark/Edu fit that rangy DM type. The odd man out would probably be Mike Bradley. He does not cover enough ground to play DM and is not a Holden/De Rosario type of attacking CM. Fullbacks would have to be able to handle the ball and overlap. Wide play would be the key and Castillo and Spector/Dolo would fit perfectly.

    With good talent, I think Dom could elevate the US team but that style against the best in the world would demand alot from the players going forward. Personally, I think an attacking group of Altidore/Davies, LM-Donovan, CAM-Feilhaber, RM-Holden would thrive in Kinnear’s system.

  5. Kinnear brings a national team coaches mentality to the game and I love it. It’s the main reason why Holden slipped into the MNT as if he’d been getting capped his whole career. If the U.S. doesn’t get that European signing when Bradley leaves the job, not that I said leave, then Dom is definitely on the list.

  6. What Kinnear has done really well is match players to his system.

    Let me put that another way, Kinnear chose the system first, and then finds players who fill the spots. For example, Cam Weaver does better for the Dynamo than for the Quakes because he plays well within the system.

    Sometimes the Dynamo have experimented, e.g., Carraccio (sp?), Jaqua, Wondolowski, Akinbiyi, Kamara, Oduro, at forward. But players who aren’t performing rarely are kept on the roster for long.

    I doubt this formula would work as well with the national team. Given all the Ching-haters, Adu-defenders, and Bradley-bashers, too many fans wouldn’t accept a hegemonic regime that imposes a single-minded system and clears out the dead wood with such haste.

  7. I believe Kinnear is the best coach in MLS hands down but I do not believe he would be a good fit with the nats. His strengths are developing talent and building team chemistry. It would be better to keep him in MLS, building guys into national team players the way he has done with Holden. We need him right where he is.

  8. MLS doesn’t need international stars as Mr. Beckham asserted the other day. It’s teams need to start winning in international competitions like this. That’s how those international stars are created in the first place. By proving that they play on teams in leagues that matter.

  9. Way to go MLS. These are the kinds of wins that MLS needs to gain momentum and pride. These matches should have more meaning for MLS teams. I like that Houston reduced some tickets down to $5, but I would be happier to see them make them free. Maybe these are the kinds of matches that “convert” people.

    Great performance and here’s to hoping MLS continues its strong play in CCL.

  10. Yeah, I also agree. Kinnear is an amazing coach for developing talent because he gets players to go with their strengths and add the other dimensions as it comes. I’m really not sure how well people like Ashe and Cameron would have developed on other teams. And that’s just the new blood, not including the other people that revived their careers there. I don’t count Holden in there, because I really think he would have excelled anywhere- he’s that sort of talent.

  11. Very impressive win for Houston. Kinnear seems to get the best out of his players including new arrivals like Weaver, Oduro and now Thompson. Holden is a star in the making. The team is clicking now and hopefully the game against Pachuca will tell a more foavorable outcome.

  12. @Kosh

    Kinnear is an interesting option….

    However, I’d rather he stay with Houston and continue to keep making that team a powerhouse in MLS (and I’m not a Houston fan). I think it’s eventually going to be important to have a couple of dominant teams in MLS that will (fingers crossed) be a good pipeline to the MNT. As the league gets stronger and salaries go up (again fingers crossed), hopefully we’ll have a couple of very strong domestic teams where our NT players will play together on a daily basis. I think that is one thing we miss when we push our players to go to Europe. Yeah, for now, it’s good because the level is higher. But nothing can replace chemistry and being around each other (at least to me). And since Kinnear understands the game here, I find his contribution more valuable to the domestic league. He seems to develop players like no other coach in MLS.

  13. This was a great game for Houston, now lets hope The MLS needs having their best teams winning games like this in the Champions League. If a MLS team can win it all that would be the best thing for the league. Of the MLS teams, my money is on Houston to win it.

  14. I am still so frustrated about the result of last night’s Puerto Rico-Saprissa game that I am ready to spit sparks.

    That is twice–in Bayamon, no less– that Islanders failed to get the three points. Failed to keep possession. Failed to manage the result. Just plain failed.

    It was the second time in two weeks that I was so freaking furious and frustrated that I didn’t sleep well. I just kept thinking about the points that dropped…

    The players are going to have to get over it. Today they fly to Rochester for the away leg of the first round of the USL1 playoffs.

    Man, was I hot…

  15. I enjoy watching Houston and the way they play. It would be a great to see them move deep or even win this competition. They are one of the more pleasing to watch teams in MLS. They are a good representative for the league.

  16. If D.C. United wins its upcoming match on Thursday, we could be on track to see 3 MLS teams qualify for the knockout round. Much improved over last year.

  17. Posted by: Blokhin

    […] but it helps when the other team gives up with 30 minutes to play and doesn’t play much defense to begin with…

    Just like the Crew did against Cruz Azul. Let’s hope the Crew can get a decent result at home.

    Houston, thank you for representing MLS so well.

  18. Houston imposed their game on Unido. Was it just me or was the ref half competent in this game? I mean he blowed the whitle a bit too much for my liking, but it was not onther CONCACAF howler of a night. Not the best, but I’ll take it…considering.

    I like the way Kinnear’s teams play. They are consistently the best at maintaining possession of the ball and always strive to impose their game on the opponent. Plus he brings a passion and temprament that I like in coach/manager.

    Not to get off course here, but I do find him one of the better options to take over the USMNT mantle when BB’s done. I know he’s not that sexy foreign name that people get all juiced up for on the internets machines, but Kinnear is an excellent man manager, appears technically and tactically sound, imposes his style, rearly plays down to the opponent, and gets the American player. I dunno, I’m liking this guy for the big job.

    Let the debate begin…

  19. Impressive performance by Houston. They dominated from start to finish. The Dynamo looked like Barcelona compared to Arabe Unido.


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