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It's been more than a decade since the Premier League first introduced goal-line technology, working with the Hawk-Eye system that uses multiple cameras to track the ball and alert the referee — in real time — whether a ball has crossed the goal line.

Saturday night, Minnesota United probably wished that MLS would spring for the technology as well.

Wil Trapp's 34th-minute shot probably didn't cross the line; replays made it appear that the ball was only part way over. Jordan Adebayo-Smith's 99th-minute header probably also didn't cross the line; Houston goalkeeper Steve Clark made a sprawling save to claw the ball out of the corner of the goal, and there was no camera angle that could confirm whether he'd done so before the entire ball was over the goal line.

But "probably" is a long way from "definitely."

Trapp, who had the best view of anyone of his chance, wasn't willing to claim the goal. "I think it was close," he said, drawing out the last word to indicate how close it might have been. "Without goal-line technology, you're working off cameras. I think for me, you just go with whatever they decided, but I don't think it went all the way over."

Given that MLS just endured a work stoppage with its referees in which the league fought the officials over every nickel and dime, it seems unlikely that they're about to spring for the cost of installing the Hawk-Eye system in 29 stadiums.

For their part, nobody with Minnesota United was claiming that goal-line technology would have, or should have, given the home team an extra goal. "If they were over the line, it would have been great if we could have something automatic to tell us that," Loons coach Eric Ramsay said. "haven't seen the sort of necessary angle, but you sort of trust the officials have, and they've done their job."

As MLS continues to work to make itself into a world-class league, though, it's another thing the league needs to add to its punch list. Goal-line technology is one of the few ways in which technology has improved refereeing in soccer, and it'd be far better to know for near-certain, rather than force referees and video assistant referees to eyeball imperfect camera angles to try to decide.

Bacharach makes his first-team debut

The Loons were missing starting left-center back Micky Tapias due to injury, as well as veteran backup Zarek Valentin. Throw in a red-card suspension for starting left back Joseph Rosales, and it left them with few choices on the left side of their defense.

Their decision, in the end, was to push young defender Devin Padelford back to his natural spot at fullback and hand a debut to 22-year-old rookie center back Hugo Bacharach, the ninth pick in December's MLS SuperDraft. Bacharach couldn't sign officially until March due to administrative problems, and the Spaniard had played just one game in Minnesota colors before Saturday — for the Loons' second team, MNUFC2, in their 2-0 loss last week to the Michigan Stars in the U.S. Open Cup.

"It's not easy to come in short notice and make your debut against a team that really values the ball and is going to challenge you," Trapp said. "For a first game, he should be proud of that."

Bacharach came to the Loons with both a Big Ten and a European pedigree. His college career included a year at Indiana (as well as three at Fairleigh Dickinson), but before his college career, he was part of Spanish giants Villareal's youth academy.

"Of course, like every debut, I had some nerves at first, but my teammates did a great job of trying to help me and tell me that I was good enough to be where I was," said Bacharach, who referred to captain Michael Boxall as "like a big brother" in helping him out.

He did a credible job in his debut, including a crunching — and legal — tackle on attacker Latif Blessing in his first 15 minutes. Houston's second goal won't go on his highlight reel, though — striker Sebastian Kowalczyk, one-on-one with Bacharach, managed to nutmeg the defender before blasting a long-range strike past Dayne St. Clair for the game-winner.

"He did really, really well," Ramsay said. "There were some minor moments, where you [would] look at and think perhaps he would make a different decision or use the ball in a different way, but largely for an MLS debut it was really impressive."

Rey-no-show in jersey form, too

Before the game, I thought I'd go talk to a few Emanuel Reynoso believers, by chatting with the fans who were still sporting the jersey of MNUFC's AWOL star player.

The only problem? Finding anybody in a Reynoso jersey.

There were none waiting at the players' entrance before the gates opened. There were none in the stadium's Brew Hall, an hour prior to kickoff. I found people wearing number 10 for both Lionel Messi and Loons legend Miguel Ibarra before I managed to find anyone with the shirt of the Loons' current number 10.

Eventually, I did track down fan Pat Benner, who noted that he doesn't have the best history of picking players for his Loons jerseys. "My jersey before this one was Francisco Calvo," he said.

Benner did try to see the best of Reynoso, noting that if he left to get his green card, he must be planning to be in MLS for awhile. Eventually, though, he couldn't stay positive. "Maybe [Reynoso] feels like he's too big for the club," he said.