Houston hosts Chivas, eyes semifinal berth

Two teams meet for the third time this season

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Photo Credit: 
Kevork Djansezian / Getty Images

The Houston Dynamo square off against a
familiar foe on Tuesday night as they battle Chivas USA at Robertson Stadium for a spot
in the semifinals of the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup.

Parking is free for the match, and tickets are $8 for season ticket holders and $12 for the general public.

Houston has gotten the best of Chivas USA of late, most recently beating them 3-0 at Robertson Stadium in April and 2-0 at The Home Depot Center in May. The Dynamo
are 8-0-3 in their last 11 matches against Chivas USA, which includes a win
in the 2006 Western Conference semifinals. As a result, Houston has to feel
confident facing off against Chivas USA both in Open Cup play and again in
SuperLiga on July 18.

“Mentally, we have superiority over them that we can dominate them when it
comes to the game,” forward Dominic Oduro said. “On paper, too, we should
win. That to us is an advantage, and it gives us confidence that if we play
well, we can come out with three points. At the same time, it’s just another game that if you play well, you win. But
if you try to relax, they will overcome you, so we have to be confident and play
well.”

The Dynamo have yet to lose to Chivas USA at Robertson Stadium, holding a
7-0-2 all-time advantage over the Red-and-White in Houston. Though it is clear they have a
home-field advantage, Houston traditionally uses more bench players in Open Cup
matches. Chivas, on the other hand, used a strong blend of starters in their
last Cup match against Austin, and that might level the playing field.

“[What Chivas do] doesn’t change things,” head coach Dominic Kinnear said.
“For us, it will be similar to the last game with the Open Cup, but you have to
remember with injuries and [Joseph Ngwenya] being suspended [on Saturday
against Columbus], some things will change, but it will be similar to what we
did before.”

The Dynamo are also well aware of the dangers Chivas provide, and Houston
does not want to give the Goats any help in jumpstarting their season.

“They’ve had some games where they’ve dominated possession and had chances
and given up an unlucky goal,” Kinnear said. “They come off a good result
against Philadelphia where they held the ball up well, and hopefully Tuesday
won’t turn their season around. It’s our job to make sure that doesn’t
happen.”