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MLS Sep 27, 2018

Houston Dynamo capture first U.S. Open Cup title in club history

HOUSTON (Via U.S. Soccer) – The Houston Dynamo claimed their first Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup title in club history with a 3-0 win against the Philadelphia Union on a soggy night at BBVA Compass Stadium.

Although Houston ceded much of the ball to Philadelphia, they were dynamic in attack, especially 22-year-old forward Mauro Manotas, who scored two first half goals to set the Dynamo on the path to victory and earn the 2018 U.S. Open Cup Golden Boot award with six goals – a mark that ties the Modern Era (1996-present) record for most goals in a single Open Cup tournament – over the course of the competition.

With 16,060 fans braving the sporadic elements, the Dynamo went to work early, pressing for a goal from the opening whistle. It didn’t take long for a goal to come, and at first, it seemed that the Union had scored the opener in the third minute, but Fafa Picault’s looping header over Houston goalkeeper Joe Willis was ruled out for offside.

Seconds later, the night’s winning combination clicked as the speedy Alberth Elis was chipped in behind the Philadelphia backline by Óscar Boniek García. Elis cut in from the right sideline and chopped a cross through the goalmouth past two Union defenders and the outstretched glove of goalkeeper Andre Blake to the head of Manotas, who dropped to his knees in order to guide his header into the roof of the net in just the fourth minute of play.

Unfazed by the early concession, the Union put their foot on the ball and knocked it around the park, looking to find a crack in the Houston defense. Despite garnering more than 65 percent of possession, Philly was not able to carve out many clear-cut goal scoring chances, a marked contrast to the clinical finishing from the Dynamo, who doubled their lead through Manotas’ second strike in the 25th minute.

Against the run of play, Houston counter attacked via a surging run from Manotas, who once again received the crucial pass from Elis. This time however, the young Colombian had more work to do to evade both Union center backs after cutting in from the right wing and striking a well-placed shot from just outside the top of the box past a sprawling Blake, off the left post and into the net.

Approaching half time with a 2-0 lead, Houston lost veteran center back Phillipe Senderos to injury, but Kevin Garcia ably stepped into the backline to help the Dynamo keep the visitors from threatening a comeback.

Although the game opened up in the second half for the Union, they we’re unable to capitalize on their opportunities to truly test Willis in the Houston net. The final dagger then came in the 65thminute on yet another Dynamo counter. Romell Quioto was played in on goal and his low drive was parried by Blake into the path of recovering defender Auston Trusty, whose unfortunate attempt to clear billowed the back of his own goal.

Philadelphia head coach Jim Curtin brought on attackers Jay Simpson and David Accam, but neither could find the cutting edge to help draw the visitors back into the game. It was a cruel end for the men from Chester, who have now reached three Open Cup Finals in the last five years but remain in search of a first title for the club that was founded back in 2010.

For Houston, which had the fortune of playing every one of its 2018 U.S. Open Cup matches at home in Texas, the title represents the club’s first silverware since 2007 when they won the second of their two MLS crowns. It also earns the club $300,000 in prize money and a berth in next year’s Concacaf Champions League.

– 2018 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Match Report –

Match: Houston Dynamo (MLS) vs. Philadelphia Union (MLS)
Date: Sept. 26, 2018
Competition: 2018 U.S. Open Cup – Final
Venue: BBVA Compass Stadium; Houston, Texas
Attendance: 16,060
Kickoff: 7 p.m. CT
Weather: 76 degrees; rainy

Scoring Summary: 1 2 F
HOU                         2 1 3
PHI                           0 0 0

HOU – Mauro Manotas (Alberth Elis)            4th minute
HOU – Mauro Manotas (Alberth Elis)            25
HOU – Auston Trusty (own goal)                   65

Lineups:
HOU: 23-Joe Willis, 11-Andrew Wenger, 4-Philippe Senderos (16-Kevin Garcia, 41), 2-Alejandro Fuenmayor, 7-DaMarcus Beasley, 5-Juan Cabezas, 27-Óscar Boniek García (24-Darwin Cerén, 78), 17-Alberth Elis, 10-Tomás Martínez, 31-Romell Quioto (8-Memo Rodríguez, 83), 9-Mauro Manotas
Substitutes not used: 18-Chris Seitz, 20-A.J. DeLaGarza, 12-Arturo Álvarez, 25-Eric Bird
Head coach: Wilmer Cabrera

PHI: 18-Andre Blake, 12-Keegan Rosenberry, 3-Jack Elliott, 26-Auston Trusty, 28-Raymon Gaddis, 11-Alejandro Bedoya, 6-Haris Medunjanin (8-Derrick Jones, 89), 17-C.J. Sapong, 10-Borek Dockal (7-David Accam, 78), 9-Fabrice-Jean Picault, 19-Cory Burke (27-Jay Simpson, 68)
Substitutes not used: 1-John McCarthy, 33-Fabinho, 4-Mark McKenzie, 2-Warren Creavalle
Head coach: Jim Curtin

Stats Summary: HOU / PHI
Shots: 9 / 19
Shots on Goal: 5 / 5
Saves: 5 / 2
Corner Kicks: 2 / 5
Fouls: 22 / 11
Offside: 1 / 6

Misconduct Summary:
PHI – Borek Dockal (caution)                      51st minute
HOU – Tomás Martínez (caution)                53
HOU – Mauro Manotas (caution)                 61
HOU – Óscar Boniek García (caution)        69

Officials:
Referee: Nima Saghafi
Assistant Referee 1: Cameron Blanchard
Assistant Referee 2: Kyle Atkins
4th Official: Alejandro Mariscal

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