Dynamo's Taylor a game-time decision vs. Sporting KC

Houston center back left first match early with injury

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Houston Dynamo center back Jermaine Taylor is a game-time decision to suit up in the second leg of the Eastern Conference semifinal series against Sporting Kansas City on Wednesday after he returned to training on Tuesday.

The Jamaican international and Dynamo starter hurt his left knee in the 44th minute of Sunday’s opening leg trying to stop a Graham Zusi strike. After trying to return, the center back lasted 10 minutes before being lifted for Andre Hainault.

“As far as [Jermaine] goes he’ll be a game-time decision,” head coach Dominic Kinnear said. “We’re going to give him an extra day to see how he feels [Wednesday].”

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Taylor sat out Monday’s training but was back involved in running and passing drills before the club was scheduled to depart for Kansas City on Tuesday afternoon.

Kinnear said that the club would take an extra player in case the defender cannot go.

Taylor started 26 games during the regular season for the Dynamo, his second in the league.

The conventional option to replace an injured Taylor is Hainault, who was Houston’s Defender of the Year in 2011 and started 24 games during the regular season this year.  

“He did great. It was an easy one with one guy missing in the backline,” Kinnear said of Hainault’s impromptu performance on Sunday. “Andre’s been there before. He’s tough. He’s prepared and he’s ready. So it was easy and I thought he came in and played well for us.”

Said Hainault: “It feels pretty familiar. I don’t feel to out of place there. Jermaine’s a tough guy and hopefully he’ll be back. It shouldn’t be too much drama for the Kansas City game.”

Darrell Lovell covers the Houston Dynamo for MLSsoccer.com.