Cristian ‘Chaco’ Maidana’s arrival to the Houston Dynamo gave the team a playmaker who can help create scoring opportunities – and eventually goals.
Sunday’s 3-3 draw against the New England Revolution may feel like a letdown – the Revolution's injury-time heroics put a cork on the celebration – but there’s positives for Maidana and the Dynamo. Houston had 14 total shots with five on target and nine of them from inside the box, with many coming from their 19 crosses from open play.
“It was a beautiful game. We passed the ball a lot, kept possession and implemented what we practiced during the week,” Maidana told MLSsoccer.com via telephone. “In the end, we didn’t want to lose like that but New England is a quality team with great players and they ended up tying the game.”
Maidana is known for assisting goals than scoring them, having finished tied for second in MLS in both assists (15) and chances created (79) in the 2015 season. Yet, there he was at the end of the first half turning a New England Revolution turnover into a Houston Dynamo score. In his last two seasons with the Philadelphia Union, Maidana scored three goals total. He’s one-third of the way to meeting that mark – and he intends to surpass it.
“I’m not one to score goals but all my teammates and my friends in soccer tell me that I have to take more chances in the box and take shots on goal,” said Maidana. “I have a tendency to look to pass instead of taking a shot and this year I want to try to make more plays in the box.”
He added that he thinks he can score five or six goals this season but in the end just wants to create as many scoring chances in the box as possible. Maidana may get that opportunity as he played in his most comfortable position – as the attacking central midfielder.
“I feel comfortable there, it was the position I played in Philadelphia,” said Maidana. “I have the liberty to run to attack or go down and look for the ball.”
The three goals against the Revolution were a one-game sample size of the Dynamo’s offensive potential and with a high-powered FC Dallas team coming to town on Saturday (8:30 pm ET, MLS LIVE), a repeat performance could be vital to Houston's chances of ending a seven-game losing streak across all competitions in the Texas Derby.
“We have great midfielders, forwards, and wingers,” said Maidana. “We’re dangerous and we have confidence in ourselves.”