Houston Dynamo FC remain undefeated at Shell Energy Stadium this season after they played Real Salt Lake to a scoreless draw earlier today.
Dynamo forward Iván Franco tallied the first shot on goal of the game following a three-pass sequence at the edge of the box. Midfielder Adalberto “Coco” Carrasquilla found forward Corey Baird at the top of the box. Baird played the ball back to Franco, but his effort was handled by Salt Lake goalkeeper Zac McMath.
Dynamo goalkeeper* Steve Clark*, who reached 20,000 league minutes during tonight’s match, made his first save of the evening in the ninth minute when he denied Maikel Chang. The Dynamo shot stopper finished with five saves against Salt Lake tonight and earned Man of the Match honors. This was also the fifth clean sheet for Clark this season and the sixth for the Dynamo in all competitions.
Defender Micael played a key role in the defensive clean sheet, winning possession six times and recording three clearances in what was his first career MLS start.
Baird forced a save in the 38th minute off a pass from Carrasquilla at the near post. The 27-year-old attacker earned his 100th league start today and finished with three chances created against Salt Lake.
Clark was called into action again in the 40th minute to deny a scissor kick from Bertin Jacquesson at the far post.
The crossbar denied Baird in the 42nd minute after the winger got behind the Salt Lake backline following a first-touch pass from Carrasquilla.
Houston’s first opportunity of the second half came in the 55th minute when captain Héctor Herrera switched play to find defender Franco Escobar just outside the box. The outside back played the ball into the box to Franco, who laid the ball off to an oncoming Herrera, but his effort was deflected and saved at the near post.
The Dynamo had another clear chance in the 79th minute as forward Amine Bassi put a ball through to Carrasquilla from just outside the penalty box, but the Panamanian was unable to hit the target from the right side.
Ten minutes later, another Houston chance presented itself after forward Nelson Quiñónes beat the RSL defender to the ball in the final third and put the ball across the box for forward Sebastian Ferreira, whose shot went wide of the far post.
Earlier today, the Houston Dynamo FC Unified Team opened the MLS Unified season with a 4-0 victory over RSL Unified at Houston Sports Park (HSP). The match was the first of four games this season, with Houston next hosting Austin Unified for a full 90-minute match at HSP on May 27 followed by a condensed match at Shell Energy Stadium that night after the conclusion of the first team match.
The Dynamo return to Shell Energy Stadium on Wednesday, May 10 to host Sporting KC in the Round of 32 of the U.S. Open Cup. The team returns to league action on May 13 at home to host the Seattle Sounders.