There are now four teams that have gone wire-to-wire over an MLS season without one loss at home.
Here’s the really interesting part: two of them were managed by Dominic Kinnear.
Houston closed out its home season Saturday with a 3-1 win over Philadelphia. With that, the Orange concluded its first year at BBVA Compass Stadium with a happy, healthy and surely helpful 11-0-6 mark. (Not to mention a pretty hardy plus-19 goal difference.)
Kinnear also coached the 2005 San Jose Earthquakes in the last season before that club moved to Houston. (The 2010 Real Salt Lake club and 2011 Los Angeles Galaxy also went all year without a home loss.)
What Kinnear, easily the most long-standing MLS manager in his current position, told the Houston Chronicle about his latest achievement in charge of the Dynamo:
It’s a team achievement 100 percent. These guys are the ones that play and play hard. I’m lucky and appreciative of all their efforts. I have a very nice job and I also have the best seat in the house watching these guys play.”
Ironically, the Dynamo now have to go dig for a little road success in order to help arrange a more pleasant playoff stroll.
They remain in fifth place, one point behind New York and three points behind Chicago. Catching the Fire might be a stretch, but pulling past New York may be possible, and it would surely be quite helpful.
The fourth-place side will host Major League Soccer’s newest playoff wrinkle, the 4th vs. 5th place one-game knockout. If Houston can make up the difference next week in Colorado (while the Red Bulls make the short trip south to face Philadelphia), the teams would potentially meet in Houston. (Assuming they both finished behind Chicago, of course.)
And we know how well that has generally worked out this year for visitors at BBVA.