I watched the MLS Cup victory for Houston on Tivo this evening and a few things were apparent to me. (Let me preface my comments by saying I did not watch one minute of NFL Football today and have no idea who won or lost besides the Dolphins because I saw a bunch of fans who came back from the Dolphins game at a rest area. Hopefully for MLS, more people are becoming like me, and just tuning out the NFL completely. If I were not in a Fantasy Football league I probably would not have watched a single game all year.)
- Houston did not miss Ricardo Clark. I really thought Adrian Serioux played an amazing match and was well positioned on almost every New England attack.
- Brian Ching’s workrate was simply amazing. While he doesn’t have the finishing of Taylor Twellman, it was obvious to me based on watching the two head to head why exactly Bruce Arena selected Ching over Twellman for the World Cup. Besides, Ching got the best of Twellman a chance late in regulation where Ching tracked back and played some amazing defense.
- Alejandro Moreno provided quite a lift for Houston when he replaced Paul Dalglish in the 80th minute. Moreno was able to both hold the ball, and find space on the New England side of the pitch.
- Speaking of Dalglish his presence in the MLS Cup was good for the league’s reputation abroad, as he comes from perhaps the best known family of Scottish footballers.
- New England has too many players who do similar things. Pat Noonan, Andy Dorman, Jose Cancela and Clint Dempsey are all essentially the same player. All four are good players but the Revs need another finisher up front to compliment Twellman.
- The San Jose/Houston franchise has become the most cohesive unit in the league over the past few seasons. With or without Landon Donovan on the squad, the roster for the Quakes/Dynamo filled with role players and other complimentary parts is a model for every MLS franchise.
- I hate the shootout! But the rules are as such and Houston earned their victory.