Late Kobayashi Equalizer Saves Point For New England Revolution At Houston Dynamo

Daigo Kobayashi’s late strike earned the New England Revolution a point on opening day of 2016 MLS action against the Houston Dynamo at BBVA Compass Stadium.

Diego Fagundez got the Revs off to a flyer after breaking the deadlock on three minutes, but Cristian Maidana and Andrew Wenger put the hosts ahead with goals either side of half-time.

Giles Barnes canceled out Charlie Davies’ strike in the 77th minute, but substitute Kobayashi struck home in injury time to split the points on the night.

Early goal for the visitors

The highly anticipated beginning to the new MLS season finally came around, and the game in Houston didn’t disappoint, with plenty of goals and end-to-end action throughout the contest.

New England managed to get ahead within the opening exchanges of the game due to a stunning finish from outside the area. The game got off to a quick start and Fagundez drilled a half-volley at goal, which whistled past the inside of the post and into the corner of the net.

Chances went begging, but both sides still looked like they had goals among them and it wasn’t until injury time at the end of the first-half when Houston found a way back into the game.

Houston have been tipped to succeed this season (Getty Images)
Houston have been tipped to succeed this season (Photo: Getty Images).

Shuttleworth error forgotten with Wenger strike

A defensive error from Bobby Shuttleworth allowed Maidana, who was making his debut for the Dynamo, through on goal, and the crafty midfielder made no mistake with the finish.

It wasn’t too long after the restart when the hosts found their second of the game, a decisive goal, which put them ahead of the Revs. Will Bruin connected with Wenger just five minutes after the contest got back underway, and the forward was able to slot home past the approaching keeper.

The Revolution took the setback well and reacted instantly – Houston’s lead lasted just a matter of minutes before the visitors found an equaliser. Davies managed to latch onto his own rebound to prod home to level up the match on 52 minutes, which evidently gave the visitors a lift.

Je-Vaughn Watson teed up Teal Bunbury, who had a fantastic opportunity to put his side ahead, but Joe Willis saved well with his feet from close range.

Barnes strikes, but Kobayashi rescues point late on

The Dynamo found the net up once again, this time on 77 minutes, when a neat break upfield paid dividends, as the hosts took the lead for the second time in the game. Starlet Barnes stroked the ball past the keeper, and it looked as though that would be the final goal of the game. 

However, adversity struck the hosts late in the game. The Revs managed to find a last-gasp equalizer in the third minute of injury time on a late rally concluded with Kobayashi firing home Fagundez’s cross to even it up seconds before the ref's final whistle.

New England plays its first home game of the season next Saturday against D.C. United, while Houston hosts in-state rivals FC Dallas next Sunday.