It was a game that wasn't broadcast live in Colorado and if you stayed up to watch it on Altitude, there is a special place in the supporters hall of fame for you. The game just wasn't that exciting.
The Rapids failed to score again and, like the first two games, didn't give up a goal. They became the first team in MLS history to start the season with three straight scoreless draws.
All of us at Burgundy Wave are starting to sound like a broken record, but the Rapids need to score a goal. The defense was okay. Houston didn't really have a good shot on goal and as a defense that is something you can hang your hat on. At times though, they seemed to be a step or three off a Houston attacker around the box. Better scoring teams will punish you if they are given time.
A point on the road is never bad, but it seemed to me the Rapids left 2 points in Houston.
Here is how I saw the match.
Clint Irwin (7): Irwin didn't need to make many saves and when called upon he fought through the crowds and got the punch on the ball. Harrington put him in a bad position in the second half but Irwin was there and won the race to the ball to clear it. Clint can't start the season any better, three straight shutouts is as well as one can do.
Michael Harrington (4): He was just there on the right-hand side this week. Harrington's play seemed to regress a little from the first couple of weeks. He had the horrible free kick in the first half that went all-the-way across the pitch and touchline and then the previously mentioned soft back pass to Irwin which could have been extremely bad for the Rapids.
Jared Watts (6): When the lineups were announced there were a lot of nervous Rapids supporters when they saw Watts name at center back. But Watts held his own and did a good job. He stood up well when Pittinari gave up the ball in a dangerous position and then in the 75' he cleared the ball and didn't take a mental break when the quick throw came in. He held up play long enough to allow the defensive support to get back. Not a bad season debut for Watts.
Bobby Burling (6): He had a quiet game compared to his first match in Philadelphia. He did a good job of getting under David Horst's skin early in the match. He was a good physical presence and provided the necessary leadership in front of Irwin.
Marc Burch (6): Solid, but another quiet game from Burch. He worked hard all match and could be seen in the attacking third and getting back into the defensive third. He had a great veteran move late in the match where he drew a foul on Kofi Sarkodie that earned Sarkodie a yellow for persistent infringement. Unfortunately, he didn't get a chance at a free kick in this match.
Lucas Pittinari (4): I don't think Pittinari had a good match. He turned the ball over early in the first half in a dangerous situation. Otherwise he seemed absent, at least I didn't notice him.
Sam Cronin (6): He continued the strength in the defensive midfield for the Rapids. Though it was Burling that tangled with Horst, Cronin was the one exchanging words with Horst as they were going up the field. He did well breaking up play when was needed to. He even got a shot off.
Dillon Powers (6): Though I was skeptical of Powers starting on the right, he did serve the ball well. In the 36' he got a pass to Torres and then a beautiful chip shot to Gabriel Torres in the 66'. The Rapids should have scored on one or both of those opportunities. I still think Powers best position is center attacking midfield. He provides good service and allows the Rapids to have more attacking options on the wings. Let's see what happens Saturday.
Marcelo Sarvas (6): He was playing in the number 10 position and had the most opportunities to score. Sarvas probably should have scored in the first half and again in the second half after Powers chipped in Torres, Torres held the ball up and dropped it for Sarvas who just missed the net wide. If he puts it on frame there, the Rapids get a goal. Sarvas is getting opportunities, now just needs to put it in the back of the net. He was my Man of the Match.
Juan Ramírez (6): He seemed to cause the most problems for the Dynamo. His ability to dribble and maintain possession is good. He set up Sarvas' first shot and had a good sequence working the triangle in the second half but he also had some bad giveaways. He is young and experience will come. Maybe he holds the ball too long and he may need to move it quicker. Time will tell.
Gabriel Torres (4): As the striker, he needs to score. He had a couple of opportunities in this match to do that and misfired. He is working hard and I am not criticizing him for his work ethic. But as the striker, he needs to score some goals. On the chip from Powers, it may have been a bad bounce, but he needs to anticipate the ball coming up and be ready to hit it. He seemed to panic a little bit on the ball, moving it too quickly. He seemed to disappear once Badji came on and he moved to the wing.
The Rapids made only two substitutions and they were relatively late.
Dominique Badji (5): He came on in the 77' and added some fresh legs for the Rapids attack. He was looking lively but couldn't get the service needed. If he would have come on sooner, maybe he could have done something.
Vicente Sánchez (N/A): Sanchez came on in the 83' and didn't get many touches. Here is hoping we see him more on Saturday versus New England.
Now it is your turn. What did you think of the players performances?