Houston Dynamo FC visit PayPal Park on Saturday for the second meeting with the San Jose Earthquakes this season. Saturday’s game is the end of a two-game road trip that began on Tuesday with a 0-0 draw against the Vancouver Whitecaps at Rio Tinto Stadium in Utah.
Dynamo defender Teenage Hadebe made his Dynamo and MLS debut on Tuesday and finished with two interceptions and three clearances. Hadebe and the Dynamo backline also led the team to their second clean sheet of the regular season. Outside back Zarek Valentin played a key role in the shutout with three interceptions and five clearances. Dynamo goalkeeper Marko Maric did not face a shot on goal and finished with no saves for the first time this season.
Offensively, Houston was held scoreless for the second time this season and will look to Academy product Memo Rodriguez to generate chances on Saturday. Rodriguez leads the team with 15 chances created this season. Rodriguez and the rest of the Dynamo offense will look to generate opportunities for forward Maxi Urruti, who currently leads the team with six goals.
Houston will also look to claim the season series against the Earthquakes after earning a 2-1 victory on April 16 in the opening week of the season. The Dynamo claimed all three points at BBVA Stadium with goals from both Rodriguez and Urruti. Houston is winless in Northern California since 2015 and enter the match with a 4-7-2 record on the road against San Jose.
The Earthquakes enter Saturday’s match winless since May 7 and with three consecutive draws after Wednesday’s 1-1 tie against Sporting Kansas City. Nathan Cardoso gave San Jose the lead in the 53rd minute, but the Quakes conceded minutes before the final whistle to split a share of the points. Forward Carlos Fierro returned from injury on Wednesday and the Dynamo backline will be tasked with containing Fierro, playmaker Eduardo “El Chofis” López and winger Cristian Espinoza. Cade Cowell will miss Saturday’s match after joining the U.S. Men’s National Team in Texas on Tuesday for the 2021 Gold Cup.
The Dynamo return to BBVA Stadium on Saturday, July 31 to host David Ochoa and Real Salt Lake at 7:30 p.m. CT.