The Houston Dynamo and LA Galaxy traded goals in an electric match highlighting Romell Quioto's set-piece prowess on early goals in each half, and response goals late in each half with goals involving the team's three top-flight offensive players. In the end, however, it was a 90th-minute Memo Rodriguez header that delivered the Dynamo a 3-2 win, and some recaptured home-field swagger, on Saturday night at BBVA Compass Stadium.
The scoring opened on a free kick just two minutes into the match. Quioto, taking for Houston, sent a curling free kick to the far post, where recently arrived Venezuelan defender Alejandro Fuenmayor neatly finished. The goal was initially waved offside, but Video Review allowed the goal to stand.
The Galaxy answered in the 39th minute on a play initiated when Ola Kamara stripped Darwin Ceren of the ball, dribbled downfield, and with Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Giovani dos Santos to choose from on either flank, he went with the Swede. Though Ibrahimovic's shot was blocked by Dynamo goalkeeper Joe Willis, dos Santos pounced on the rebound to equalize.
The second half started much like the first, with Quioto taking a 47th-minute free kick and squeezing the ball through the Galaxy wall to put the Dynamo back up. Again, late in the half, Ibrahimovic, dos Santos, and Kamara combined on a play that netted Kamara an 85th-minute goal that looked to get the Galaxy level for good. But in the 90th minute, a Dynamo attack led to Honduran international Boniek Garcia stealing the ball and getting downfield quick enough to cross in the ball that eventually, after a pinball sequence in front of goal, found Rodriguez's head for the game-winner.
- 2' – HOU – Alejandro Fuenmayor Watch
- 39' – LA – Giovani dos Santos Watch
- 47' – HOU – Romell Quioto Watch
- 85' – LA – Ola Kamara Watch
- 90' – HOU – Memo Rodriguez Watch
- THE BIG PICTURE: With this victory — following their 5-1 win against (a version of) Toronto FC two weeks prior — the Dynamo now have three wins in their first five home matches this year, including the yes-that-happened 4-0 home opener to Atlanta United FC. While they're not yet at their incredible home form from last year, they could be returning to what got them to the playoffs this year. For the Galaxy, meanwhile, it's a third straight loss and a fourth in five matches, which has to concern head coach Sigi Schmid.
- MOMENT OF THE MATCH: In a game of last-goal-wins, Garcia's dangerous cross set off a scramble in front of goal. Had the ball ended up in David Bingham's arms, we'd be talking about a Galaxy team in playoff position and a Dynamo still in need of a win. Rodriguez's header changed the calculus, perhaps for both teams' seasons.
- MAN OF THE MATCH: Even before his solo free kick goal, Quioto made his presence felt from the opening whistle. He even mixed it up with Ibrahimovic in the box during a corner kick, which opened up a chippy period of the game that left three Galaxy players on yellow cards.