The Dynamo without Brian Ching easily defeat the Fire.
Brian Ching and Dwayne De Rosario started the game as substitutes for the Houston Dynamo. For the first ten minutes or so it looked like the Dynamo would dominate the entire match but then Chicago came alive. For five or six minutes starting at minute fifteen, the Fire managed to earn four or five corner kicks and really put the pressure on the Dynamo. However Houston GK Pat Onstad made several nice saves to keep the ball out of the goal, twice he just barely got his fingertips on the ball to tip it over the crossbar.
Houston got their act together and ten minutes later Stuart Holden (31') opened the scoring for the Dynamo. From the left wing Wade Barrett sent in a cross and Holden was slightly trailing and covered but managed to one-time the ball past the goalkeeper.
The Fire did not just collapse after conceding the first goal. They countered with a little pressure of their own and Dynamo defender Ryan Cochrane almost netted an own goal in the thirty-fifth minute while defending a play. The Fire ended the first half with another good scoring chance but did not have enough forward support so the score was 1-0 to Houston at the break.
The second half really belonged to Houston. I noted just one good scoring chance for Chicago (Thiago, 51st minute). Nate Jaqua (58', unassisted) scored for the Dynamo after play broke down in front of the Fire goal. Houston midfielder Joseph Ngwenya was dribbling to the left of the goalkeeper and defenders were flying by him and the ball just popped out over to Jaqua who one-timed the ball into the top right corner of the goal. He roofed it.
Then four minutes later it was Joseph Ngwenya's (62') turn to score and his goal is likely the MLS goal of the week. Ngwenya took the ball just inside the 18 yard box and then juked around Fire defender Jim Curtain. Matt Pickens, the goalkeeper, came off his line and Ngwenya put a move on him as well. While Pickens went to the ground Ngwenya went further to the end line and shot the ball at an acute angle. The ball went just past the near post while a Fire defender slide by in a futile attempt to prevent the goal.
Dwayne De Rosario entered the game in the 81st minute as a substitute for Joseph Ngwenya, who was subject to several hard tackles throughout the match. In stoppage time, De Rosario assisted on Chris Wondolowski's (90'+) goal.
That's how the game ended, 4-0 to the Dynamo who have now recorded seven straight shutouts.
- - - - -
MLS All Star Game
Celtic FC v MLS All-Stars
July 19, 2007
9:00pm ET, ESPN 2.