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Preview: Houston Dynamo vs. Sporting Kansas City

The Basics

Houston Dynamo vs. Sporting Kansas City
Saturday, August 4, 2018, 8:00 p.m. CT
BBVA Compass Stadium, Houston, Texas

Broadcast Information

KUBE 57 – 7:30 p.m. (CHANNEL LISTINGS)
ESPN+ – 8:00 p.m. (out-of-market)
SportsRadio 610 AM – 7:30 p.m.
Univision Radio 1010 AM – 7:30 p.m.

Preview

Two teams hovering around the playoff line in the Western Conference meet Saturday night when the Houston Dynamo, four points below the line, host Sporting Kansas City, four points above the line.

The Dynamo are winless in their last four games, and suffered their second straight defeat in a 2-1 loss at Portland, while Sporting Kansas City hasn’t won in five games with consecutive losses following a 3-2 home loss to FC Dallas.

Sporting Kansas City earned a 3-2 win against Houston in late June, snapping an eight-game winless run against the Dynamo (4L-4D), per Opta.

Houston Dynamo   

The struggles away from BBVA Compass Stadium continued for Houston (7-8-6) with a 2-1 defeat at Portland. Sebastian Blanco put the hosts in front in the 7th minute before Romell Quioto leveled five minutes later.

The score remained that way until the 80th minute when Fanendo Adi struck for the emotional winner just before his move to FC Cincinnati was made official. The Dynamo are now 1-5-4 on the road this season.

“In the second half, I think I notice the some players got tired. It is normal after five games in twenty-something days,” Wilmer Cabrera said. “It’s been tough. We tried to hold, but we didn’t keep the ball and when you don’t keep the ball with those type of players, they have very talented players and they punish us one time.”

  • Suspended: None
  • Suspended after next caution: M - Alberth Elis
  • International duty: None
  • Injury Report: D - A.J. DeLaGarza (torn left ACL), M - Juan David Cabezas (left quad injury), F - Mac Steeves (left hip surgery), D - Philippe Senderos (right quadriceps injury)

Projected Starting XI
(4-2-3-1, right to left)
GK: Joe Willis — Adolfo Machado, Jared Watts, Leonardo, DaMarcus Beasley — Eric Alexander, Oscar Boniek Garcia — Andrew Wenger, Tomas Martinez, Romell Quioto — Alberth Elis

  • Notes: The Dynamo are averaging 2.0 goals per 90 when the trio of Alberth Elis, Quioto and Tomas Martínez are on the field together (1,198+ minutes) and 1.4 per 90 when at least one of the three is off the pitch (861+ minutes). … The Dynamo have won just one of their last four league home matches (1L-2D), conceding six goals. This comes after a four-game home winning streak in which they allowed a total of four goals.

Sporting Kansas City      

Sporting Kansas City (9-6-6) suffered a fourth loss in a fifth consecutive game without a win, falling at home to FC Dallas, 3-2, Saturday.

Gerso Fernandes leveled in the 50th minute after Michael Barrios opened the scoring for the visitors in the 23rd minute. Barrios added two more goals in the second half to put the game away before Daniel Salloi scored what proved to be a cosmetic tally deep in stoppage time.

“I think we were dangerous throughout the course of the game,” Peter Vermes said. “I think we had very good possession for most part of the game. But at the end, we can’t give up goals like that. It’s hard to always just score more goals than the other team. At some point, you’ve got to be able to get a clean sheet or give up just one goal. We gave up way too many.”

  • Suspended: M - Roger Espinoza
  • Suspended after next caution: D - Ike Opara
  • International duty: None
  • Injury Report: OUT: D - Jimmy Medranda (knee injury), F - Khiry Shelton (right MCL tear, lateral meniscus tear), D/M - Brad Evans (Achilles injury)

Projected Starting XI
(4-3-3, right to left)
GK: Tim Melia — Graham Zusi, Ike Opara, Matt Besler, Jaylin Lindsey — Yohan Croizet, Ilie Sanchez, Felipe Gutierrez — Gerso Fernandes, Diego Rubio, Daniel Salloi

  • Notes: Johnny Russell has five combined goals assists in his last five appearances for Sporting Kansas City. He had one in his five prior appearances in league play. … Sporting have allowed 2+ goals in six straight league games (1W-4L-1D), one short of the franchise record of seven, which has been done three times – most recently in 1999.

All-Time Series

  • Overall: Houston Dynamo 10 wins, 40 goals … Sporting Kansas City 6 wins, 34 goals … 12 draws
  • At Houston: Dynamo 6 wins, 21 goals … Sporting Kansas City 3 wins, 15 goals … 5 draws
  • Last meeting at Houston: Houston Dynamo 2, Sporting Kansas City 1 (Oct. 11, 2017)

Officials

Referee: Christopher Penso
Assistant Referees: Apolinar Mariscal, Mike Rottersman
4th Official: Alejandro Mariscal
VAR: Daniel Radford