Preview: Houston Dynamo vs. Sporting Kansas City

Dynamo aim to get back on track against similarly-shorthanded rivals Kansas City

THE BASICS
Houston Dynamo vs. Sporting Kansas City
Friday, June 6, 7:30 p.m. CT
BBVA Compass Stadium, Houston, TX

BROADCAST INFORMATION
CSN Houston Plus - 7:30 p.m. (7:00 p.m. pregame) CHANNEL LISTINGS
MLS LIVE - 7:30 p.m.
Yahoo Sports Radio 1560 AM - 7:30 p.m. (7:00 p.m. pregame)
La Ranchera 850 AM - 7:30 p.m. (7:00 p.m. pregame)

PREVIEW
Foes in the MLS Cup Playoffs each of the last three seasons, the Houston Dynamo and Sporting Kansas City renew their acquaintances Friday evening when the clubs face off at BBVA Compass Stadium. Both clubs come into the game looking to snap long winless runs. The Dynamo return home off a lost road trip where they were outscored 8-0 in three defeats, last a 3-0 loss at the Colorado Rapids, while Sporting saw their run without a victory extended to five games in a 1-0 reversal at D.C. United.

REFEREE: Juan Guzman. AR1 (bench): Brian Dunn; AR2 (opposite): Jonathan Johnson; 4th: Alejandro Mariscal
MLS Career: 42 games; FC/gm: 25.4; Y/gm: 3.5; R: 14; pens: 10

INTERNATIONAL ABSENCES: HOU: Brad Davis (USA); Boniek Garcia (Honduras)… KC: Graham Zusi, Matt Besler (USA)

INJURY REPORT, PRESENTED BY HOUSTON METHODIST (as of Thursday, June 5)

HOUSTON DYNAMO -- OUT: Ricardo Clark – Concussion; Tony Cascio – Right knee surgery; Mark Sherrod – Left knee ACL tear; DOUBTFUL: Brian Ownby – concussion

SPORTING KANSAS CITY -- OUT: OUT: Ike Opara – R ankle; Chance Myers – L Achilles; Peterson Joseph – illness; QUESTIONABLE: Aurelien Collin – R hamstring strain; Igor Juliao – R quad strain

HEAD-TO-HEAD

  • ALL-TIME (18 meetings): Dynamo 6 wins, 22 goals … Sporting 4 wins, 19 goals … Ties 8
  • AT HOUSTON (9 meetings): Dynamo 3 wins, 12 goals … Sporting 2 wins, 8 goals … Ties 4
  • RETURN MATCH: 8/29: Sporting Kansas City vs. Houston Dynamo, 7 p.m. CT
  • The teams have met each of the last three years in the MLS Cup Playoffs, with Sporting winning their Eastern Conference Championship matchup a year ago 2-1 on aggregate. The Dynamo had advanced each of the two previous years, including in 2011 at Sporting Park with a trip to MLS Cup on the line.
  • In league play, the last three meetings at Sporting Park have ended in draws. Sporting came away with points on both of their league visits to BBVA Compass Stadium a season ago, a 1-0 win on May 12 followed by a scoreless draw Oct. 9.
  • Coaches record: Peter Vermes vs. HOU: P11 W3 L2 D6… Dominic Kinnear vs. KC: P20 W8 L2 D10

HOUSTON DYNAMO
The Houston Dynamo concluded their three-game road swing with a third shutout defeat, falling 3-0 to the Colorado Rapids on Sunday evening at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park. The Dynamo are in fourth place in the Eastern Conference with 17 points from 15 games.

LAST MATCH

  • The Rapids were in the lead after just the fifth minute. Right back Marvell Wynne hit a perfect cross from the right flank finding a streaking Deshorn Brown, who headed in from about at the penalty spot.
  • The lead was doubled on 35 minutes. Dillon Powers made eye contact with Brown and sent a looping pass into space on the right side of the box, where Brown caught up to it before slotting it past goalkeeper Tally Hall inside the far post as the offside flag stayed down.
  • Kamani Hill put the match away six minutes after the second-half restart with a wonderfully inventive goal, soaring into the air to connect on a beautiful back heel from a Powers corner kick.
  • Dynamo head coach Dominic Kinnear made no changes to the team that fell 3-0 to the San Jose Earthquakes at Buck Shaw Stadium.
  • HOUSTON DYNAMO (4-2-3-1): Tally Hall - Kofi Sarkodie, Jermaine Taylor, David Horst, Corey Ashe - Servando Carrasco, Warren Creavalle (Alexander Lopez 47+) - Omar Cummings (Jason Johnson 74), Giles Barnes, Andrew Driver (A.J. Cochran 85) - Will Bruin.

TEAM NEWS

  • The Dynamo return home following a three-game road swing where they were shut out in three consecutive games, outscored 8-0. It’s the third time in Dynamo club history they’ve been blanked in three games in a row; their 299-minute stretch without hitting the back of the net is the third longest in club annals.
  • The Dynamo have now conceded 27 goals this season, the most in MLS. Their average of 1.80 goals per game is 16th-most in the league, ahead of Montréal, Chicago (both 1.83) and Chivas USA (1.92).
  • “I think it was a combination of them dictating the game, and us not really doing any favors for ourselves,” said Corey Ashe. “We turned the ball over in bad situations, not really staying clued in. We’re giving up soft goals right now, goals that can be prevented. We’ve had a rough patch, but we need to sort it out, that’s for sure.”
  • “When we break it down, we’re not playing bad; we’re just not making teams have to really beat us,” said Will Bruin. “We’re leaving guys open in the box, we’re not taking accountability plays, and we’re not scoring goals. That’s just something we’ve got to get out of.”
  • The Dynamo have allowed five goals in the opening 15 minutes, tied for third-most this season in MLS (Seattle and New York have allowed six). The Dynamo have allowed eight of their 27 goals in the first 15 minutes of each half.
  • “When you give up a goal in the first five minutes, it’s deflating, but we should have guys getting up and saying ‘hey, let’s go, it’s just one goal, get it back, get it going forward,” said Bruin. “We’re putting our heads down, trying to feel sorry for ourselves, and this is what happens.”
  • Said Dynamo head coach Dominic Kinnear: “Losing a goal in the first five minutes of the game is never good. We just didn’t play well. We came out, we gave a free header in the first five minutes. It’s a dangerous game to play, to play from behind.”
  • The Dynamo are also averaging 1.07 goals per game, ranking 17th in MLS, ahead of just Chivas USA (1.00) and Montréal (0.92).