Martin Rivero stands up to Houston's Brian Ching in defense of teammate Nathan Sturgis
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Midfielder Martin Rivero returns from broken foot to make his season debut in road draw against Houston

Martin Rivero stands up to Houston's Brian Ching after teammate Nathan Sturgis was fouled.


Colorado Rapids midfielder Martin Rivero's last two matches have both been against the Houston Dynamo. Unfortunately, they've been separated by six months.

Rivero started the 2012 season finale against Houston at Dick's Sporting Goods Park. However the Argentine suffered a broken foot in the first preseason match in late January, keeping him on the sideline for the first eight matches of the season. On Sunday in Houston, the 23-year-old made his 2013 debut when he came in for Kamani Hill in 68' minute.

“Last Saturday I had 20 minutes in a reserve game, and I felt good," Rivero said after Sunday's match. "And today I had a little more than 20, but it’s totally different in a game like this, with a team like Houston, on their field, in this difficult climate. I felt good, and really happy for the team, which played a good game. Happy to get a point, as well.”

Rivero, who led the team with eight assists last year, nearly tied the match in the 78th minute when he was on the receiving end of an Atiba Harris cross. Rivero was able to head the ball back across the goal and past Houston goalkeeper Tally Hall but the ball trickled wide (watch below).

The return of the team's 2012 Young Player of the Year is a positive for a side dessimated by injuries this year. And his wasn't the only good news on that front. Captain Pablo Mastroeni also returned to action Sunday after missing the last four matches with a quad straing. However midfielder Hendry Thomas will need further evaluation after being forced off with a strained hamstring early in the second half.

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