Player Ratings: Houston Dynamo vs. Nashville SC

After a tough loss against Sporting KC, Nashville SC was able to bounce back in convincing fashion with a 3-1 victory against Houston Dynamo.

Below are our player ratings.

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Each member of the Speedway Soccer crew gives each player that saw the pitch a rating based on their match performance. Below is a quick guideline of our evaluation process.

  • A rating of 6 denotes and average performance. Each player starts out with a 6 and their performance either adds or subtracts from that rating.
  • Scores are determined after re-watching the match and looking at the stats, and are the averaged total of each Speedway member’s ratings.

Joe Willis – 7.5: Fantastic effort from Willis between the pipes trying to direct traffic for a new formation. The goal he gave up was unfortunate, but the game seemed to be well in Nashville’s favor by the time it was conceded. 

Taylor Washington – 8.3: Delivered some sublime service from the flank since he was asked to push further up the field in the 3-4-3 formation, including on his assist. Per NSC Play-By-Play announcer John Freeman, Washington also led the way for Nashville in touches, chances created, interceptions, completed passes, and tackles.

Dave Romney – 7.3:  With Zimmerman out, Romney had to take command of the backline as the most experienced of the group. He was able to do that and then some.

Jack Maher – 7.8:  An excellent first start for Maher, but it didn’t hurt that he had some experienced center backs surrounding him. If Smith continues to roll with three center backs, I’d expect Maher to potentially get some more minutes.

Jalil Anibaba – 7.3:  Anibaba provides an excellent depth piece for Gary Smith’s side in relief of Zimmerman, doing what he needed to do to keep the Houston attack in check.

Eric Miller – 7.3: Miller, who hasn’t been stellar, was excellent in his role out wide both on the attacking and defensive side. If he can continue this run of form, it might be hard for a returning Alistar Johnston to win his spot back.

Matt LaGrassa – 8: Commanded the midfield very well in the “Dax McCarty” role with his distribution and pressure off the ball.

Brian Anunga – 7.3:  Solid as always from Anunga. His workrate in the middle is a real asset for Smith’s side, and will help him continue to see minutes.

Alex Muyl – 7.5Worked hard in his role as a winger for Smith and connected well on a few passes.

Hany Mukhtar- 9.5: An all-around excellent performance from Nashville’s DP, as he scores a brace for his side, including his outstanding freekick. The outing was good enough for him to earn MLS player of the week honors.

Abu Danladi – 8.3:  Nashville’s other goalscorer was an absolute menace for Houston’s backline, making plenty of runs and also set up Mukhtar for his first of two.


Randall Leal – 8: Leal looked hungry for another goal after getting a taste a few weeks earlier. He’ll be a serious threat as a change-of-pace player off the bench if that trend continues.

Derrick Jones – 7.5:  Jones was excellent in coming in for Hany, which has sort of become his niche as the relief No. 10 for Hany.

Jhonder Cadiz – 6.3: Cadiz made his first appearance, but still appears to need a few more training sessions before he’s match fit.

Brayan Beckeles – 6: Picked up a yellow card, but still faired well in relief of Maher. 

Anibal Godoy – 7: Godoy made an appearance after a short stint away from the squad. Look for him to be back in the starting lineup soon.


Gary Smith – 9.5:  Smith’s decision to trot out a 3-4-3 formation paid huge dividends for his side in a match that seemed like not much offense would get produced due to his limited attacking options. However, the formation allowed for a more attacking approach from the flanks, and the middle of the park was kept tidy by LaGrassa and Anunga. Could we see more of this formation moving forward? We’ll see. Either way, Smith made the most of the personnel he was given.

What say you? Do you agree or disagree with our match ratings? Feel free to reach out to us on Twitter and let us know your thoughts!

Author: Andy Simmonsjoined Speedway Soccer after stints with Golden Goal and 615 Formation. A former journalist now in web development, Simmons also previously worked for Main Street Media and Gannett. A student of the game, Simmons has been playing soccer his entire life and participates in several adult soccer leagues around town. When he is not playing soccer, you can find him at brunch, rewatching Rick and Morty or The Office, doing a mock draft for fantasy football, or complaining about Arsenal.

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