Preview: Dynamo vs. Fire

Houston returns to BBVA Compass Stadium with home unbeaten streak on the line

THE BASICS
Houston Dynamo vs. Chicago Fire
Sunday, April 14, 4 p.m. CT
BBVA Compass Stadium

BROADCAST INFORMATION
UniMas - 4 p.m.
Yahoo! 1560 AM - 3:30 p.m.
La Ranchera 850 - 3:30 p.m.
Game will air on CSN Houston Monday morning at 11 a.m.

PREVIEW
The Houston Dynamo return home looking to make history when they play host to the Chicago Fire at BBVA Compass Stadium in a rematch of their postseason encounter of a year ago. The Dynamo are looking to set the league’s home undefeated record of 35 games across all competitions, though they are coming off a 2-0 loss at the Portland Timbers last weekend. The Fire finally broke out of their early-season struggles with a first win of the season last weekend, a 3-1 defeat of the New York Red Bulls at home.

REFEREES 
REF: Edvin Jurisevic. SAR (bench): Eric Proctor; JAR (opposite): James Conlee; 4th: Ismail Elfath MLS Career: 55 games; FC/gm: 22.7; Y/gm: 3.6; R: 4; pens: 7

INJURY REPORT, PRESENTED BY THE METHODIST HOSPITAL SYSTEM

HOUSTON DYNAMO -- OUT: Calen Carr – Left knee; QUESTIONABLE: Boniek Garcia - Left Achilles tendonitis

HEAD-TO-HEAD

  • ALL-TIME (15 meetings): Dynamo 6 wins, 22 goals ... Fire 4 wins, 19 goals ... Ties 5
  • AT HOUSTON (7 meetings): Dynamo 3 wins, 10 goals ... Fire 2 wins, 9 goals ... Ties 2
  • RETURN MATCHES: 7/27: Houston Dynamo vs. Chicago Fire, 7 p.m. CT (NBCSN); 9/1: Chicago Fire vs. Houston Dynamo, 4 p.m. CT (UniMas)
  • LAST YEAR (MLS): 4/15: CHI 1, HOU 1 (Pause 27 – Bruin 24) | 7/3: HOU 0, CHI 0 | 9/2: CHI 3, HOU 1 (Nyarko 1, Paladini 19, Alex 93+ -- Ching 90)
  • The teams met a year ago in the Knockout Round of the MLS Cup Playoffs, the Dynamo taking a 2-1 victory at Toyota Park on their way to an eventual appearance in MLS Cup 2012.
  • In league play, the Dynamo last won in Bridgeview in 2009. The Fire won at Robertson Stadium in 2006 and 2007 in their first two trips ever to Houston – and have not won there since.
  • Coaches record: Dominic Kinnear v CHI: P20 W7 L6 D7 ... Frank Klopas vs. HOU: P4 W1 L0 D3

HOUSTON DYNAMO

The Houston Dynamo lost for the second time in as many road starts, dropping a 2-0 decision to the Portland Timbers at Jeld-Wen Field on Saturday evening. The Dynamo are in third place in the Eastern Conference with 9 points from 5 matches.

LAST MATCH

  • After a scoreless first half which saw two Timbers starters -- midfielder Diego Valeri and defender David Horst – come off the field injured, Portland took the lead 10 minutes after the break. Ryan Johnson took a perfectly placed cross from Diego Chara and nudged it by Houston goalkeeper Tally Hall with a lunging left-footed attempt as the goalkeeper vainly tried to keep it out.
  • Johnson doubled his and the Timbers account in the 73rd minute. He broke free down the left flank, perfectly timing his run behind the Dynamo backline to run onto a through ball from Darlington Nagbe, then buried his angled shot from the left side of the box inside the far post.
  • Dynamo head coach Dominic Kinnear made two changes to the team that took a 2-0 win against the San Jose Earthquakes at BBVA Compass Stadium. Andrew Driver came in on the flank for Boniek Garcia, and Cam Weaver started up top in place of Will Bruin.
  • HOUSTON DYNAMO (4-4-2): Tally Hall - Kofi Sarkodie, Jermaine Taylor, Bobby Boswell, Corey Ashe - Andrew Driver, Adam Moffat (Warren Creavalle 64), Ricardo Clark (Omar Cummings 81), Brad Davis - Giles Barnes, Cam Weaver (Brian Ching 71).

TEAM NEWS

  • The Dynamo are 0-2-0 away from home this season, but are 3-0-0 at BBVA Compass Stadium. After the visit by Chicago, six of their next nine games are on the road.
  • “We wanted to come here and get a good result and obviously that didn’t happen. I thought the first half we put
    ourselves in a good position, limited their chances, had some good moments ourselves, and in the second half, we were a little bit off that,” said Dynamo head coach Dominic Kinnear.
  • Will Bruin did not make the trip to Portland after suffering a hamstring injury late in the win against San Jose, an injury originally suffered a few weeks ago, but one for which he passed a pregame fitness test before the Vancouver match.
  • “I don’t like missing out and I’m trying to get back as quick as I can,” Bruin said. “It’s early in the season and I don’t want it to be nagging all year. I’d rather miss one [game] as opposed to one month. We’re just taking it day by day. There’s risk there with playing through it and maybe doing something worse. If it was a playoff game I would’ve played.”
  • Boniek Garcia was also held out of the Portland match after suffering an ankle injury in training the day before the match.
  • "He just was feeling it,” Kinnear said. “You want to make sure when guys step out on the field they’re feeling fine. He trained Friday but wasn’t feeling so good so that’s the reason he didn’t play.”
  • With a victory or a draw, the Dynamo will set the record for the longest home undefeated streak over all competitions. The Dynamo have matched the MLS record of 34 games set by Real Salt Lake.
  • “Back at home, we have a good run going there so we want to continue that. We haven’t been there in a while,” said midfielder Adam Moffat. “Anytime you lose a game you kind of want to get there and make amends. So for us it’s next Sunday, to get back to business and preparing for that and hopefully get another three points.”