HOUSTON – It’s been an active couple of days for the Houston front office.
On Wednesday, the Dynamo signed US national team legend DaMarcus Beasley as the club’s third Designated Player. To obtain him, the club had to part with young central midfielder Warren Creavalle. But on Friday, Houston upgraded in the middle by dipping back into the Honduran pipeline for World Cup veteran Luis Garrido.
The 23-year-old brings a bulldog mentality to the club. His style draws comparisons to another MLS strong man, Seattle Sounders’ Osvaldo Alonso. And with the Dynamo defense struggling, that could be just what the doctor ordered.
“Same positions, same type of attitude I’d say,” head coach Dominic Kinnear told MLSsoccer.com when asked about the comparison. “Alonso’s obviously been in the league a little longer and has more experience, but if those are the comparisons, if he gets compared to him, that’s a good comparison, and I think it’s a compliment.”
The Dynamo bring in Garrido on an 18-month loan, which will keep him in Houston through the 2015 season when they will have the option to keep him. He appeared twice in Brazil and has 20 total international caps for the Catrachos. A young, talented and tested player, he has the pedigree at a young age to add a significant bite to the Dynamo midfield.
“It’s something I definitely take a lot of pride in,” Garrido told MLSsoccer.com through a translator when asked about his tenacious style. “It’s my trademark, it’s what I do. Again, it’s one of those things that I will adjust my style depending on what Dom wants from me. If he wants me to play like that I can continue playing like that. I just want to come in here and make a positive effect.”
The Dynamo hope his acquisition will help reinforce the lineup up the middle. Houston have been carved up this season to the tune of 38 goals in 20 games, the most in the league.
“He protects the back four well,” Kinnear said. “Even in the World Cup games, I thought he did a good job doing that for Honduras. He sweeps the back four well, and in saying that he puts himself in good positions and he tackles and closes the ball down well.”
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Along with Beasley’s addition to the backline, possibly at left back, it means the Dynamo could line up with four players who played in Brazil also including American Brad Davis and fellow Honduran Boniek Garcia. Midfielder Ricardo Clark suited up for the US in the 2010 World Cup.
“Effort and sacrifice, I think those are the two main qualities you will see from Luis Garrido,” Garrido said. “I’m certainly going to leave everything on the field game in and game out.”
Houston were able to make the move for Garrido without making another move to clear space. After two big steps to shore up the club’s lineup, whether they offer up the solution to their problems only time will tell.
“We needed to do something,” Kinnear said. “We all know where the season is right now. I think with the injection of energy and quality from DaMarcus and Luis, it just makes the whole group better. I just think it makes us a stronger team.”
Darrell Lovell covers the Houston Dynamo for MLSsoccer.com.