November 20, 2007

The scene at RFK

Since this is a little late, I'm not going to dig too far into analyzing the game. That's all been done by now. Here's a little about the event...

The tailgate scene was great, with fans from all over the country all over the parking lots at RFK. The Screaming Eagles tailgate was incredibly packed, but very well organized.

It was probably due to the bright color, but it looked like there were far more Houston fans in DC than New England ones. The game made it look a little more even, but the Dynamo fans still stood out to me. The Revolution fans seemed worried going into the game, while the Houston fans were in a party mood all weekend.

I finally did see some KC representation, I saw a couple of Wizards scarves at the tailgate. I also saw a sweet Tampa Bay Mutiny shirt and a Miami Fusion jersey.

I was in the 500 section in the corner for the first half. Not a bad view actually, I was pleasantly surprised. We were across from the New England supporters, and actually had a good number of Revs fans around us. The chants were pretty even between the two sets of fans, with a few DC United chants thrown in for good measure. The Dynamo fans definitely won the battle with their flags, they had a ton.

One question, what did Twellman kick the signboard for after his goal? Was it a particular advertisement? I just saw the back of the sign from where I was and couldn't figure it out.

I moved down to the front of the 200 level during the second half. It was great being so close to the action, but the sight lines weren't good at times. By this point, the neutrals had definitely shifted their allegiance to the Dynamo. The general vibe among them was that New England was boring. Khano Smith's actions didn't help the cause, the crowd was booing him every time he touched the ball late. His attempted headbutt was right in front of us, and one of the dumbest things I've seen in a championship match (since Zidane anyway).

I was starting to wonder what Kinnear was going to do to grab control of the game, then Ngwenya scored. It wasn't pretty, but they don't give style points here. The smoke cannon in the Dynamo section was pretty nuts, I hadn't seen anything like that.

It only seemed like a matter of time before Houston got another one. DDR's header was perfection. I give New England credit, they fought hard to tie it up. Onstad's kicksave on the corner was incredible, I don't think he really knew that much about it. Great reaction save.

Houston was the better team overall, and deserved the win. They've now equaled DC's back-to-back titles in '96 and '97. Let's see if they can keep this team together another year and how they do in CONCACAF next season.

New England has to wonder what they have to do to finally get over the hump, and if Steve Nicol is the man to take them there. It would be an incredibly hard decision to make a change at the top after all Nicol has accomplished. Personally, I don't think it's Nicol that is the problem, it's the lack of resources he has at his disposal. Replacing Clint Dempsey with Adam Cristman isn't really a good idea. Hopefully Kraft decides to help him out a little more next year...

There's plenty of other stuff to get to today, watch this space...

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