Columbus Crew Downs the Houston Dynamo 3-0
A first half blunder and two late second half strikes gave the Crew another home victory on a hot and humid night in Columbus Crew Stadium.
Emilio Renteria once again proved to be the difference in a fairly tame first half; however, it was a goalkeeping error from Houston’s Tally Hall that gifted the powerhouse striker his second goal in two games.
Hall appeared to be in full command of an over hit pass from Eddie Gaven, but as the ball ran towards the keeper’s grasp he appeared to suffer a lack of concentration, likely due to seeing the imposing figure of Renteria closing down upon him, and fumbled the ball, leaving the Crew forward to easily walk the ball into the net.
In the second half it was Renteria again asking questions of the Houston defense, the striker looked dangerous on the ball and closed down the Dynamo back line whenever he wasn’t in possession. He was eventually substituted for Jason Garey in the 74th minute, walking off to the roaring chant of his name from the Nordecke faithful.
The Crew scored their second goal of the game in the 84th minute. This time coming off the boot of Englishman Andy Iro, from a Guillermo Barros Schelotto free kick just outside the area.
With Houston looking stretched and tired, Coach Warzycha gave Frenchman Leandre Griffit his MLS debut, who took only two minutes to score his first Crew goal, firing home from a tight angle after Schelotto was denied by Houston’s goalkeeper, Hall.
Overall, a comfortable win for a Crew team missing regular starters Frankie Hejduk and Brian Carroll, suspended and injured respectively. The depth of the current squad allowed Warzycha to tinker with his line up without really effecting the overall balance of the team. A good thing, considering the Crew will have a fairly busy run in to the season with a third supporters shield, Open Cup and Champions League success all to play for.
The Crew take to the road for the next few weeks to allow the Ohio State Fair to take place. Next MLS home game for the Crew is August 21 against the Colorado Rapids.