Preview: Houston Dynamo vs. D.C. United

THE BASICS
Houston Dynamo vs. D.C. United
Sunday, October 12, 2:00 p.m. CT
BMO Field, Toronto, Ontario

BROADCAST INFORMATION
CSN Houston - 2:00 p.m. (1:30 p.m. pregame) CHANNEL LISTINGS
MLS LIVE - 2:00 p.m.
Yahoo Sports Radio 1560 AM - 2:00 p.m. (1:30 p.m. pregame)
La Ranchera 850 AM - 2:00 p.m. (1:30 p.m. pregame

PREVIEW
The Houston Dynamo will be fighting for their playoff lives when they play host to D.C. United on Sunday afternoon at BBVA Compass Stadium. The Dynamo return home sitting four points out of fifth place in the Eastern Conference and the final playoff position, following their 1-0 win at Toronto FC at midweek. United last week clinched their place in the MLS Cup Playoffs with their scoreless draw with Sporting Kansas City at RFK Stadium, and are looking to wrap up the top seed in the division.

REFEREE: Ismail Elfath. AR1 (bench): Adam Garner; AR2 (opposite): Chris Strickland; 4th: Kevin Terry Jr.
MLS Career: 38 games; FC/gm: 25.4; Y/gm: 3.2; R: 11; pens: 11

INJURY REPORT, PRESENTED BY HOUSTON METHODIST (as of Monday, October 6)

HOUSTON DYNAMO -- OUT: Mark Sherrod – Left knee ACL; Tally Hall – Right knee ACL; QUESTIONABLE: Will Bruin – Right mid-foot sprain

D.C. UNITED -- OUT: Jeff Parke – L ear surgery; Conor Doyle – L knee surgery; Andrew Dykstra – L Achilles surgery; Chris Rolfe – L forearm surgery

INTERNATIONAL ABSENCES: HOU: Boniek García, Luis Garrido (Honduras, vs. Mexico, Oct. 9; vs. USA, Oct. 14)

HEAD-TO-HEAD

  • ALL-TIME (20 meetings): Dynamo 13 wins, 36 goals … United 5 wins, 18 goals … Ties 2
  • AT HOUSTON (10 meetings): Dynamo 9 wins, 20 goals … United 0 wins, 4 goals …Ties 1
  • 2014 MLS: 5/21: DC 2, HOU 0 (Rolfe 29; Espindola 64); 8/3: HOU 1, DC 0 (Bruin 91+)
  • The teams are meeting for the third time this season. Will Bruin scored the game’s lone goal in second-half stoppage time to hand the Dynamo the victory Aug. 3 at BBVA Compass Stadium; Chris Rolfe and Fabian Espíndola scored on either side of halftime to pace United to a 2-0 victory May 21 at RFK Stadium.
  • The Dynamo have never lost to D.C. United in Houston, winning 10 of 11 meetings there all-time in league and cup play (with one draw).
  • The United victory in the first meeting snapped a five-game Dynamo winning streak in the series in league play.
  • Coaches record: Dominic Kinnear vs. DC: P26 W14 L7 D5 … Ben Olsen vs. HOU: P11 W2 L8 D1

HOUSTON DYNAMO

The Houston Dynamo completed their two-game road swing with a needed result, defeating Toronto FC 1-0 on Wednesday evening at BMO Field. The Dynamo are in a tie for seventh place in the Eastern Conference with 39 points from 31 games.

LAST MATCH

  • The game's lone goal came in the 35th minute. Kofi Sarkodie picked out Giles Barnes with a long ball on the right side, and after Barnes escaped the challenge of defender Nick Hagglund and sent a low shot through TFC goalkeeper Joe Bendik’s legs from a tight angle on the right side of the penalty area.
  • The home side had a glorious opportunity to level terms 10 minutes into the second half, when TFC striker Luke Moore was tugged down in the box by Dynamo center back A.J. Cochran. Referee Armando Villarreal whistled for a penalty kick and showed a red card to Cochran. Jermain Defoe took the resulting spot kick, but Dynamo 'keeper Tyler Deric dove to his right to stop the attempt.
  • Dynamo head coach Dominic Kinnear made two changes to the team that fell 1-0 to the New York Red Bulls at Red Bull Arena. Servando Carrasco and Andrew Driver came into the midfield in place of Boniek Garcia and Luis Garrido.
  • HOUSTON DYNAMO (4-4-2): Tyler Deric - Kofi Sarkodie, David Horst, A.J. Cochran (ejected 55), DaMarcus Beasley - Brad Davis (Brian Ownby 83), Ricardo Clark, Servando Carrasco, Andrew Driver - Giles Barnes (Jason Johnson 97+), Omar Cummings (Eric Brunner 58).

TEAM NEWS

  • The Dynamo took points from a third road game out of the last four, with two wins and a draw in that time since Aug. 29.
  • “I think obviously we don’t win the game tonight the season is going to be dwindling down to possibly just playing games out and hoping,” said Dynamo head coach Dominic Kinnear. “But now it gives us a good chance, we have jumped Philadelphia and pulled right up next to Toronto here. So we are still within a good chance of making this and that’s all we ask ourselves.”
  • The Dynamo also recorded their third defensive shutout in the last four matches, all with Tyler Deric in goal, who has started the last six matches following the injury to Tally Hall.
  • “I don’t know if he’s going to be that good every game he plays, but he has the potential to be a very good goalkeeper, and I think he’s fulfilling that right now,” Kinnear said of Deric. “He’s been good. I wouldn’t say he’s been a secret, but I want people to know about him, because Tally’s been so good for us and Tyler just hasn’t had the chances to play.”
  • Deric saved his first penalty kick in MLS, after conceding the first one he faced back on June 6 vs. Sporting KC (Dom Dwyer). The Dynamo have conceded 10 penalty kicks, tied for most in MLS this season, along with New York, Portland, Real Salt Lake and San Jose.
  • “Tyler’s a monster,” said forward Giles Barnes. “It’s unfortunate the way he’s got his chance, but he’s like that every day in training. I don’t really expect anything less of him. He’s incredible; he’s a great ‘keeper.” Added center back David Horst: “We all, everybody, had to step up our game, and every single guy did it on the field. Most of the credit should go to Tyler Deric. He basically stood on his head for most of the game.”
  • Said Deric: “We have a system with our goalie coach here. We do a lot of scouting to make sure we can see what players do on their approach to the ball. I got great advice on if a PK happens this is what you should do and fortunately I got a hand to it.”
  • Giles Barnes scored his first goal in four matches, since Sept. 13. Barnes now has nine goals on the season, matching his total from a year ago.
  • “It will keep us in the playoff race. I thought the team was fantastic. A massive three points on the road. It was a great team performance with a man down as well,” said Barnes.
  • Kofi Sarkodie was credited with his fourth assist, matching his single-season career-high he set a year ago. Sarkodie has assisted on each of the Dynamo’s last two goals.
  • Servando Carrasco returned to the lineup for the first time since June 6, coming into the center of midfield with Luis Garrido and Boniek Garcia both away on international duty with Honduras.