The Houston Dynamo opened their 15th season with a 1-1 draw with the LA Galaxy in front of a sold-out crowd this afternoon at BBVA Stadium.
Forward Mauro Manotas scored the equalizer for the Dynamo off a through ball from Zarek Valentin in the 54th minute. The Colombian forward shielded the ball away from a Galaxy defender and beat Bingham with a low shot to the far post. The goal was Manotas’ 49th in league play, leaving him one shy of tying Will Bruin for second in Club history with 50.
The Galaxy took the lead in the 13th minute after forward Cristian Pavón collected a long outlet from goalkeeper David Bingham, then dribbled across the top of the box to create space for a perfectly-placed shot in the upper right corner that gave Dynamo goalkeeper Marko Marić little chance at the save.
The Galaxy knocked on the door first as left back Emiliano Insua found forward Aleksandar Katai inside the box in the second minute, but his header bounced off the post. Shortly after the opening goal, Manotas forced a save in the 24th minute with a shot from outside the box for Houston’s first chance of the match.
Manotas and team captain Boniek Garcia combined for a one-two inside the box in the 37th minute, but Garcia’s effort hit the side netting. The duo almost scored the equalizer for Houston six minutes later, but Garcia’s effort was off target.
Both teams had stellar chances to nab the game-winner in the second half, but neither could capitalize. Houston was inches away from taking the lead a few minutes after Manotas’ equalizer when left back Adam Lundkvist’s cross to the far post almost reached midfielder Tommy McNamara. Marić was called into action in the 74th minute when he denied Sebastian Lletget at the near post. The Dynamo shot-stopper finished with two saves in his Major League Soccer debut.
Houston travel to the Midwest next weekend to face Sporting Kansas City at 7:30 p.m. on KUBE 57. The Dynamo return to BBVA Stadium on March 14 to host the reigning MLS Cup champion Seattle Sounders FC.