Thomas B. Shea/Getty Images

Match Preview: Houston vs. Colorado

The Basics

Houston Dynamo (5-7-1) vs. Colorado Rapids (6-3-2)
7:30 p.m.
Robertson Stadium
>>Buy Tickets<<
$10 Farewell to Oliver tickets

All-time record: Houston leads the series 8-3-2 (7-3-2 regular season)

Game Guide - downloadable PDF

Gameday Information

Broadcast info

KHOU 11.2 (7:15 p.m. pregame)
TV Informa (7 p.m. pregame)
SportsTalk 790 (6:45 p.m. pregame)
La Ranchera 850 (7 p.m. pregame)

What's at stake?

Houston will soon begin running out of games as it tries to make up ground on a playoff spot. The Rapids are one of the teams ahead of the Dynamo in the standings, so three points in a home game against a Western Conference rival is critical for Houston. If the Rapids can limit Houston to a tie or possibly even pull out a victory, Colorado will distance itself from the pack — and in particular Houston, who the Rapids host later in the year.

Last meeting

August 30, 2009: With the Rapids desperate for points near the end of the season, the Dynamo — who at the time were in first place — traveled to Dick’s Sporting Good Park. The hosts, though, were quite rude to the visitors: Forward Kei Kamara should have given Houston a goal early in the second half off a breakaway, but goalkeeper Matt Pickens stood his ground to preserve the clean sheet and earn the Rapids three points. Julien Baudet scored the game-winner off a header from Mehdi Ballouchy's corner kick in the 55th minute.

Heroes & Villains

Brian Ching vs. Scott PalgutaWith Baudet likely out injured, Palguta seems like the likely choice to partner with Drew Moor in the center of the Rapids' defense. After being cut from the U.S. World Cup squad, Houston forward Brian Ching scored two goals in three MLS games. If Palguta can minimize Ching’s effectiveness, not only in front of goal, but also in holding the ball up, Colorado may be able to sneak out of Robertson with a point or three.

Omar Cummings vs. Eddie RobinsonSpeed has frequently been the Achilles’ heel of the Houston Dynamo defense, and Cummings has plenty to trouble Houston. Communication between Robinson and Bobby Boswell will be important for the Dynamo to limit the opportunities created by the Conor Casey-Cummings partnership.

Stat that makes you go "Hmm ..."

The Dynamo are 5-0-1 all-time at home against Colorado, and that includes a 3-1 win in the Western Conference championship game in 2006.

He said it

“We need to get going in the second half, and we have some points to get and some teams to try to climb over. No better time than now to start against Colorado.” — Houston goalkeeper Pat Onstad.