The road has not been kind to the Houston Dynamo this season, and the Home Depot Center has been even worse. But Sunday's 1-0 victory over the LA Galaxy reversed both trends: Houston won away from BBVA Compass Stadium for the first time this season and also got their first win over the Galaxy at their house in seven tries in all competitions.
Houston’s attack moved the ball, both on the counter and through the midfield, and their defense stepped up to never let LA feel like they were a strike away from tying or leading the match. Throw in Tally Hall’s PK save on Landon Donovan and the Dynamo have a performance they can put on the board as a blueprint for future road games.
“We’ve been talking about putting the whole 90 minutes together and not just having a good half here and there," Will Bruin told MLSsoccer.com by phone after the win. "I think that was acomplete 90-minute team effort with guys playing for each other and it showed with the win.”
So where does Sunday’s win at the Home Depot Center over the Galaxy rank among regular-season road victories in Dynamo history? Here’s a look at our top five:
1. FC Dallas 0, Dynamo 1 – Sept. 24, 2011: Winless on the road all season, Geoff Cameron’s 87th-minute header propelled Houston to a win over their in-state rivals and set them off to the first of their most recent back-to-back MLS Cup appearances.
2. LA Galaxy 0, Dynamo 1 – May 5, 2013: Hall PK save sets the tone in a complete Dynamo performance that is clinched by Andrew Driver’s 56th-minute screamer.
3. Chicago Fire 0, Dynamo 4 – July 12, 2007: On national TV, the Dynamo dismantled the Fire with goals from the likes of then-youngsters Stuart Holden and Chris Wondolowski – both future US national team players.
4. FC Dallas 0, Dynamo 3 – Sept. 30, 2007: A game that will forever be known for Ricardo Clark’s kick on Carlos Ruiz, Houston bulldozed their rivals in a precursor to their wild Western Conference semifinal series.
5. Colorado Rapids 0, Dynamo 1 – April 29, 2006: Three weeks after scoring four on the Rapids in the franchise debut, Brian Ching netted in the sixth minute for Houston’s first road victory.
Darrell Lovell covers the Houston Dynamo for MLSsoccer.com.