This was the type of player that everyone wanted to see fill a major hole in the starting eleven for the New York Red Bulls. This was the most important position on the field to help link up with the strikers and put himself into great opportunities to convert chances into goals. He didn’t have his cornrows tightened, but Dwayne De Rosario was happy to come to Red Bull Arena and be that missing piece of the puzzle.
After coming overnight from Toronto to join the Red Bulls for their match against Houston Dynamo, De Rosario — wearing #11 — made his debut for the club on the bench. It might have been alot better if he started the match because it was a dreadful performance that started the night for the Red Bulls. But everything started to turnaround once De Rosario was subbed in at the start of the second half and right away his first touch was sprung Dane Richards towards the net. Richards faked out the defender and made Houston goalkeeper Tally Hall overcommit to allow him to score his first of the season. “I think [De Rosario] changed the game in the second half,” said Hans Backe. “His final pass for the first goal… and also the way he controlled our game.”
But right away in the 50th minute it was a big goal kick from Hall that sprung the Dynamo to equalize. Headed towards goal by Will Bruin, first half substitute Cam Weaver was in a good position to head the ball into the Red Bulls net and caught Bouna Coundoul, who was already off his line charging for it. Weaver was covered by Rafa Marquez but not well enough and saw Coundoul race off his line from the near outside corner of the area.
After the Dynamo equalized it was all Tally Hall from there as he faced chance after chance from the Red Bulls and made several fantastic saves to keep the draw. He stopped Thierry Henry’s point blank shot in the 70th minute on a great cross from De Rosario And in the final minute of regulation Henry received a great cross from Juan Agudelo as he leapt up and tried to head it in, but Hall once again made the magical right handed save to take a point back to Houston.
But on the night the sloppy first half was terrible. After a solid ten minutes the Red Bulls couldn’t create any chance whatsoever. The dynamo dictated the play. And honestly if it wasn’t for Coundoul playing well and a Brian Ching shot that nailed the crossbar, this would’ve been a halftime lead for the visitors and Backe wasn’t pleased. “Sloppy first half. A little bit lazy, too comfortable, static in the first half moments. And then in the passing game, we weren’t precise enough.”
Brian Ching always plays with reckless abandon when he is sniffing a goal and he always puts himself into dangerous situations to convert any chance he can get. Well this time he got himself hurt as he took on Coundoul three times and ended up injuring a rib on the left side of his body. He tried to continue on after a lengthy stay on the ground and finally forced himself out in the 43rd minute. But once again this Dynamo side is showing their heart and fighting all match long to gain any points possible.
For the Red Bulls this is a team that is still gelling a bit, but now adding De Rosario there will be more pressure put on them to go out and get wins and make the playoffs, very comfortably. On paper it looks pretty darn good, but now it has to show on the field.