Hainault scored to break a 1-all game on a header off a corner kick by Brad Davis. He headed the ball from the near post to the inside far post for the winner in a game played in temperatures that topped 90 degrees.
“We knew they were tired,” Hainault said. “We did the right things. We kept the ball as much as we could. The game came down to set pieces, we know they are important, and that is what happened today. We held on. We defended well. We are tired, but we are happy.”
Coach Dominic Kinnear gave credit to his team for coming back after falling behind early.
“It was a great goal by Andre,” Kinnear said. “It was a little bit of luck getting back into the game. Great ball by Brad, Andre attacked it well. Three points is what we came here for and three points is what we got.”
The win extended Houston’s unbeaten streak to four, while Los Angeles is winless in seven in a row and has lost three straight by one goal each.
Los Angeles coach Bruce Arena said the Galaxy were trying to conserve energy by not running the length of the field. Game time temperature was 91 degrees, with no wind at field level.
“The pace of the game changed because of the conditions,” Arena said. “The players are not able to play at a high pace under these conditions for a long time. No one is made to play in this heat for 90 minutes.”
The Galaxy took a 1-0 lead on a goal by Edson Buddle in the 10th minute. Houston tied it in the 38th minute on an own goal by LA’s Mike Magee. A shot by Houston’s Brian Ching went off the crossbar, then bounced off Magee in front of the goalmouth and into the net.
Beckham missed two good scoring chances. A 30-yard free kick in the 51st minute was knocked over the crossbar by goalie Tally Hall, and his 25-yard free kick in the 83rd minute also was knocked away by Hall.
“It is disappointing considering we started the game so well,” Beckham said. “We knew it was going to be difficult considering the time of the kickoff and the heat.”
Beckham showed frustration throughout the game, especially in the second half. He said the frustration was geared toward referee Silviu Petrescu.
“I don’t think the referee could get any worse than our last game,” Beckham said. “I shouldn’t say too much because I don’t want to get myself in trouble. The standard isn’t good enough. It’s that simple.”
- Houston 2, Los Angeles 1
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