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Scratching the Chalkboard: Even Steven

MLS: Houston Dynamo at FC Dallas Ray Carlin-USA TODAY Sports

FC Dallas kept their five-game unbeaten streak alive and well after a 1-1 draw against the Houston Dynamo, but this one was all kinds of weird and strange with the torrential downpour that flooded the field, causing an almost two hour delay. The rain and the delay really affected both sides, as neither club established any kind of rhythm for a sustained period of time and often traded blows and chances. Dallas did manage to throw more urgency towards the last 10 or so minutes, seeking the match winner, but were held to split the spoils with their Southern neighbors.

Evenly Matched

On a normal day, I would say neither of these clubs are remotely on the same level at this stage, but with that really odd start and delay, it seemed that the weather really leveled the playing field for both sides. Statistically, neither side stood out and both Dallas and Houston just gave each other turns with the ball.

Even the shot selection was fairly evenly distributed with Ricardo Clark finishing his golazo and Ryan Hollingshead capitalizing on an excellent "Fabi does Fabi things" run.

Above: FC Dallas' shots

Below: Houston Dynamo's shots

Both sides even missed their chances, with Andrew Wenger missing a wide open goal and Walker Zimmerman directing a header straight at Tyler Deric in the 22' minute.

Yin/Yang Attack

When I said that this game was really evenly played, I do mean, really evenly. Houston opted to go down the left side and go after Zach Loyd and Ryan Hollingshead with Cristian Maidana and Boniak Garcia heavily favoring that left side.

To counter that, FC Dallas threw numbers down that same side with Ryan Hollingshead tucking in from his right mid spot, Zach Loyd providing some width on the overlap (when he could) and the Mauro's drifting towards the right too.

Is Castillo Hurt?

Fabian Castillo has not looked himself since the season opener against Philadelphia three months ago. He's still contributing here and there and that run and assist to Hollingshead was vintage Castillo, but the most trigger happy player on this team has gone extraordinarily quiet over the past few months.

In 2016, he's already gone a five game and a six game stretch between goals. For comparison, he did just one six game stretch in 2015 but put up 3 assists and 15 shots.

2015 6 game stretch: 15 shots, 3 assists

2016 5 game stretch: 10 shots, 1 assist

2016 6 game stretch: 12 shots, 0 assists

These are all of Castillo's touches against Houston:

It's pretty troubling when Castillo manages 0 successful take-ons, completed only one forward pass and not much else. I honestly don't know if it's just teams have figured out how to contain Castillo or if there's something bothering our speedy winger, but things seem a bit off. Whatever is ailing Castillo, hopefully this two week break will recharge Fabi so we can get back to giffing him making people look silly and we can start saying things like "Fabi does Fabi things".