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Houston Dynamo vs. Sporting Kansas City | 2017 MLS Match Preview

Houston Dynamo vs. Sporting Kansas City
2017 MLS Regular Season
BBVA Compass Stadium – Houston, Texas
Wednesday, Oct. 11 – 8 pm ET

The Houston Dynamo and Sporting Kansas City will meet in a match absolutely teeming with playoff implications on Wednesday, when SKC will travel to BBVA Compass Stadium in a match that was pushed back from Aug. 26 due to Hurricane Harvey.

Both Houston and Kansas City are currently above the playoff line in the Western Conference. Second-place SKC will clinch a berth in the Audi 2017 MLS Cup Playoffs with at least a draw on Wednesday and would move level with the first-place Vancouver Whitecaps on points with a win at the Dynamo. Houston are further down the table in fifth, even on points with sixth-place Dallas and just one point ahead of seventh- and eighth-place Salt Lake and San Jose. They can’t clinch a postseason berth on Wednesday, but a win would go a long way toward securing a playoff spot heading into their final two matches.

While the stakes are high, both teams will be far from full strength on Wednesday. SKC manager Peter Vermes has already confirmed that defender Matt Besler and midfielder Benny Feilhaber will not be available on Wednesday even if they don’t play in the US national team’s qualifier at Trinidad & Tobago on Tuesday (8 pm ET; beIN SPORTS, NBC Universo). Fellow US international Graham Zusi is also out for SKC due to suspension while first-choice goalkeeper Tim Melia is out injured.

Houston have internationals of their own, with the US’ DaMarcus Beasley, Honduras’ Alberth Elis, Boniek Garcia and Romell Quioto and Panama’s Adolfo Machado all doubtful following critical games with their respective national teams on Tuesday night. Forward Erick “Cubo” Torres is expected to be available after he returned to training on Monday following the death of his father on Friday.

Wednesday’s match is the first of two-straight between the teams, who will meet again on Sunday at Children’s Mercy Park.

Houston Dynamo

  • Suspended: None
  • Suspended next caution: F Alberth Elis
  • International Duty: D DaMarcus Beasley (USA), F Alberth Elis (Honduras), M Boniek Garcia (Honduras), D Adolfo Machado (Panama), F Romell Quioto (Honduras)*
  • Injury Report: OUT: D George Malki (torn ACL, out for season), M Memo Rodriguez (right knee sprain)

*Last international game on Tuesday night, but unlikely to be able to travel to Houston in time to play on Wednesday.

Projected Starting XI:
(4-2-3-1, left to right)
GK: Tyler Deric – Dylan Remick, Leonardo, Phillipe Senderos, AJ DeLaGarza – Ricardo Clark, Eric Alexander – Tomas Martinez, Alex, Andrew Wenger – Mauro Manotas

Notes: Houston’s 2-1 win over Minnesota on September 30th snapped a six-game winless run (3L-3D), and the Dynamo have not kept a clean sheet in seven league games. … Coming off the bench in the 62nd minute, Vicente Sanchez had both assists in Houston's 2-1 win over Minnesota last weekend. It was just the fourth time an MLS player has had two assists in a match this year after entering as a sub. Sanchez had four key passes in the game, tied for the second most of any substitute in a match this year.

Sporting Kansas City

  • Suspended: Graham Zusi (red card)
  • Suspended next caution: None
  • International Duty: D Matt Besler (USA), M Benny Feilhaber (USA), D Graham Zusi (USA)*
  • Injury Report: OUT: F Cameron Porter (broken fibula and ligament damage, out for season); QUESTIONABLE: M Soni Mustivar (hamstring strain)

*Last international game on Tuesday night, but unlikely to be able to travel to Houston in time to play on Wednesday.

Projected Starting XI:
(4-3-3, left to right)
GK: Andrew Dykstra – Seth Sinovic, Erik Palmer-Brown, Ike Opara, Saad Abdul-Salaam – Jimmy Medranda, Ilie Sanchez, Roger Espinoza – Latif Blessing, Diego Rubio, Gerso Fernandes

Notes: Sporting are winless in their last five road league games (2L-3D) and have only scored three goals across the five matches. They have conceded exactly one goal in each of the five games. … Sporting KC's total of 20 shots against Minnesota was tied for their third highest of the season, but their 28.6% shooting accuracy was tied for their seventh lowest of the season.

All-Time Series

  • Overall: Houston 9 wins (36 goals), Kansas City 5 wins (30 goals), 11 draws
  • At Houston: Houston 5 wins (19 goals), Kansas City 3 wins (14 goals), 5 draws


To be announced