Houston Dynamo FC close a two-game homestand on Saturday when they host the Colorado Rapids at PNC Stadium. Kickoff is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. CT and this is the final match prior to the March FIFA window. The Dynamo return to league play on April 2 in south Florida against Inter Miami CF.
Houston opened a two-game homestand with a 2-1 victory over Vancouver Whitecaps FC last Saturday. Dynamo forward Darwin Quintero scored a brace and his performance at PNC Stadium earned him MLSSoccer.com Team of the Week honors. The Colombian playmaker is the first Dynamo player to earn the honor this season and that was the fourth time he was named to the team as a Dynamo player.
Three Dynamo players tallied assists against the Whitecaps beginning with midfielder Adalberto “Coco” Carrasquilla who found Corey Baird inside the box to set up the equalizer in the first half. Forward Sebastian Ferreira laid a ball off for Quintero outside the box for his second goal of the evening and a strike worthy of a Goal of the Week nomination.
The Rapids opened the season with a 3-0 loss to LAFC on the road but have earned six points out of their last two games. They earned a 2-0 victory over Sporting Kansas City at home last weekend, and they defeated Atlanta United 3-0 on March 5.
The Rapids opened the season as a favorite to return to the postseason after they finished with the best record in the Western Conference. Robin Fraser’s squad reached the postseason behind a stout defense that only conceded 33 goals in 2021, the second fewest in the conference. The Rapids swept the regular season series against the Dynamo in 2021 and Houston enters the match with a 6-6-5 record against Colorado at home.
The Dynamo return to league play on April 2 on the road against Inter Miami CF. The team returns to PNC Stadium on April 9 to host Cristian Espinoza and the San Jose Earthquakes. For tickets and additional information, visit HoustonDynamoFC.com.
Here are three key points ahead of Saturday’s match:
- CARRASQUILLA UNLOCKS DEFENSES: Dynamo midfielder Adalberto “Coco” Carrasquilla earned his first start of the season on Saturday and played a key role in generating the equalizer in the first half. The Panamanian international played a large role in Houston’s ability to cut through the Vancouver defense and generate a 2.0 xG (expected goals), accumulating 72 touches and generating 0.46 xA (expected assists).
- DYNAMO DEFENSE STIFLES LAST YEAR’S WESTERN PLAYOFF TEAMS: The Dynamo enter Saturday’s match with one of the best defensive records in the League, ranking in the top 5 in MLS in Goals Against (number three) and xGA (number five), according to FBRef.com. The team has utilized possession to limit opponent opportunities, ranking third in the League in Passes Completed, third in the League in Passes Attempted, and first in the league in Passes per Possession, according to Second Spectrum. These results came against three opponents that qualified for the 2021 Audi MLS Cup playoffs. Next Saturday’s match against Colorado will be the fourth consecutive match against one of last year’s playoff teams.
- DYNAMO DEMONSTRATE NEW RESILIENCE: Saturday’s 2-1 win over Vancouver demonstrated a newfound resilience under head coach Paulo Nagamura. The come-from-behind victory snapped a 29-game winless streak by the Dynamo after conceding the opening goal. The last time the Dynamo secured three points in a come-from-behind triumph was against Sporting Kansas City at home on Sept. 5, 2020.