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Dynamo travel to Kansas for first road trip since March

The Houston Dynamo face a quick turnaround as they hit the road for their first road trip since March. Houston return to Children’s Mercy Park and look to build on their 0-0 draw with FC Dallas on Friday. This was the first clean sheet for Tab Ramos’ squad and Houston’s first match in the Phase 1 return to play.

Houston held FC Dallas scoreless for the third consecutive game and will look to add the finishing touch in the final third after forcing six saves, the most this season. Dynamo midfielder Memo Rodriguez forced two saves and led the team with seven shots. The Dynamo Academy product will look to spark the offense much like he did at the MLS is Back Tournament, where he scored two goals in three games. 

Dynamo forward Mauro Manotas missed Friday’s game with a thigh injury, so Houston will likely look to Christian Ramirez to snap a 163-minute scoring drought for the club. Ramirez earned his first start since last October on Friday and forced one save. 

This is the second meeting between both clubs and the first since March 7, the last game for both teams prior to MLS suspending league play due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Sporting Kansas City defeated Houston 4-0 in their home opener and now sit at the top of the Western Conference. Tuesday’s match will be the first of two meetings during Phase 1. Kansas City will visit BBVA Stadium on Saturday, Sept. 5., the final Phase 1 match in Houston. 

Kansas City return to Children’s Mercy Park after defeating Minnesota United FC 2-1 on Friday at Allianz Field. Gadi Kinda gave Sporting an early lead in the 12th minute and his effort in the 55th minute to intercept the ball at midfield forced an own goal to secure Kansas City’s fifth victory of the season. 

Houston return to BBVA Stadium on Sept. 2 to host Minnesota United at 7 p.m. The match will air live on QuestTexas ch. 55 and fans can listen to the Spanish radio broadcast on TUDN Radio Houston 1010 AM.

WHO:Houston Dynamo vs. FC Dallas
WHEN:Tuesday, Aug. 25 – 7:30 p.m. CDT
TV:QuestTexas Ch. 55 (Glenn Davis and Eddie Robinson)
RADIO:TUDN Radio Houston 1010 AM (Daniel Mejia and Lester Gretsch) 

Here are three key points ahead of Tuesday’s game:

  1. BACKLINE REACH NEW BAR: The Dynamo backline earned their first clean sheet of the season on Friday and finished with a combined 18 interceptions and 13 tackles, the second highest mark for the defense this season. Goalkeeper Marko Maric finished with one save on Friday, a season-low, and now sits at 19 for the year. Zarek Valentin and Kiki Struna combined for six clearances and Adam Lundkvist led the team in tackles with five. Honduran international Maynor Figueroa finished with three interceptions and two blocked shots against his former team. The backline will need a similar effort to contain Kansas City who have scored 15 goals this season, tied for the most in league play. Depth will be tested as well due to the quick turnaround and the Dynamo can look to defenders Jose Bizama, Alejandro Fuenmayor and Sam Junqua, who dressed on Friday, for reinforcement. 
  2. QUINTERO KEY IN FINAL THIRD: Darwin Quintero has played a role in three of Houston’s last five goals this season and leads the team with 10 chances created. The Colombian international will play a key role as he returns to Children’s Mercy Park on Tuesday and look to snap a scoreless streak that reached 163 minutes on Friday. Quintero only played 33 minutes during the first meeting between both teams in March. Since then, he has sparked an offense that went toe-to-toe with LAFC and challenged for a point against the Portland Timbers at the MLS is Back Tournament this summer. Quintero’s contributions will be key as the Dynamo look for their first victory of the season. 
  3. KANSAS CITY BUILD BUFFER: Sporting Kansas City enter Tuesday’s game unbeaten in the regular season and they secured the top spot in the Western Conference with their 2-1 victory on Friday against Minnesota United. Kansas City now hold a four-point buffer between them and Minnesota who sits in second place and trail the Columbus Crew by one point in the Supporter’s Shield race. Their unbeaten start to the regular season has been sparked by an offense that has scored 15 goals, tied for the most in league play this year. Sporting’s backline has also limited opposing teams by only conceding six goals and their goal difference of nine is the second-best mark in MLS. Houston face a challenging task on Tuesday, but both teams face lineup questions after playing their first Phase 1 game on Friday.