Houston's Tim Parker: Marc dos Santos' guarantee "disrespectful"

It wasn’t quite boldly guaranteeing a win, but Vancouver Whitecaps coach Marc dos Santos provided some bulletin board material for Houston Dynamo FC ahead of Saturday’s Western Conference showdown at BBVA Stadium.

“I think it was important to get point in the first six games, really important, but now we have a big one in Houston before the [international] break,” Dos Santos said in the lead up to the game. “I wanted the club to be in a playoff fight, a playoff race and that, after Houston, we will be. Everybody’s going to be close to that top seven. I guarantee you that after the Houston game we’ll be close or in a playoff spot.”

Dynamo defender Tim Parker took notice.

“We saw it before the game today. It was one of those things that when we saw it before the game, we took it to heart,” Parker said after Houston’s 2-1 win. “We’re obviously trying to build something here and I don’t think that should be taken lightly when teams come down here to play in Houston that they think they can just come here and get points. That’s not going to be given out easily down now.”

Even after the loss, Dos Santos isn’t wrong. The Whitecaps are just two points below the playoff line in the West, although Real Salt Lake and LAFC — the teams ahead of them in that climb — have games in hand. 

The same is true of Austin FC, Minnesota United and FC Dallas, the three teams one point below them in the table. 

As for Houston, the Dynamo are fourth in the West and 3-0-1 at BBVA Stadium this season. While Dos Santos was likely trying to instill some confidence in his squad coming into a six-pointer, his words also fired up the Dynamo.

“I was surprised. It’s hard to win in this league in general so when you kind of put an expectation like that, the opposing team, for us, we saw it as a little bit disrespectful,” Parker said. “It definitely drove us tonight.”