Houston Dynamo at C.D. Guastatoya
Tuesday, February 19, 2019, 9:00 p.m. CT
Estadio Nacional Doroteo Guamuch Flores, Guatemala City, Guatemala
Scotiabank Concacaf Champions Round of 16, Leg 1
The Houston Dynamo kick off their 2019 campaign on Tuesday night in Guatemala City, Guatemala in the Scotiabank Concacaf Champions League Round of 16.
This series marks a return to international competition for the first time since 2014 for the Dynamo, and the seventh time that the club has participated in an international tournament. Houston is 12-10-10 (W-L-D) all-time in international competitions and is 1-8-7 outside of the United States.
This will be the second meeting against a team from Guatemala for the Dynamo, and the first since they plaed Municipal in the quarterfinals of the 2008 Concacaf Champions Cup, a precursor to the current Champions League. Houston won that two-leg series 3-1 on aggregate and drew 0-0 at Estadio Mateo Flores, the site of this week's match.
Guastatoya qualified for the Champions League by first winning the 2018 Clausura championship in the Guatemalan Liga Nacional, then defeating 2017 Apertura champions Antigua GFC 1-0 on aggregate in a two-legged series. Los de Pecho Amarillo followed that success by winning the 2018 Apertura title as well, staking thir claim as the best club in Gutaemala.
Houston qualified for the Champions League by virtue of its win in the 2018 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup last September. The Dynamo knocked off the Philadelphia Union 3-0 on Sept. 26 at BBVA Compass Stadium to claim the club's third domestic championship and the seventh trophy in team history. Colombian forward Mauro Manotas led the way with a brace in the final, giving him six goals in the tournament to earn Golden Boot honors. It highlighted a breakout season for the 23-year-old, who set club records for goals in all competitions during a calendar year (25), goals in a single tournament (6) and goals in an MLS season (19).
While it will mark a return to action for Manotas and several veterans on the squad, Tuesday will be the first competitive match for a number of newcomers. Defenders Kiki Struna and Maynor Figueroa, as well as midfielder Matías Vera, stand a chance to start in their debuts for La Naranja, while offseason additions such as midfielders Marlon Hairston and Tommy McNamara and defender Chris Duvall could see action as well.
What to Watch For
- The Dynamo will play their 45th match in an officially-sanctioned international competition.
- The Dynamo will play their 21st match in the Scotiabank Concacaf Champions League.
- The Dynamo will play their 33rd match in Concacaf-sanctioned competitions (Concacaf Champions' Cup, Concacaf Champions League).
- The Dynamo need to score four goals to reach 65 all-time in international play.
- The following players could make their competitive debuts for the Dynamo: DF Chris Duvall, DF Maynor Figueroa, MF Marlon Hairston, MF Tommy McNamara, GK Michael Nelson, DF Kiki Struna, MF Matías Vera.
- C.D. Guastatoya earned their place in the 2019 Scotiabank Concacaf Champions League as 2018 Guatemala Clausura champions, defeating the 2017 Apertura champions Antigua GFC in a two-leg playoff.
- This is Guastatoya's first appearance in international competition.
- Guastatoya followed up their Clausura championship with another championship run in the 2018 Apertura campaign.
- Los de Pecho Amarillo started the 2019 Clausura season on a six-match winless streak, but compiled back-to-back 1-0 wins on Wednesday, Feb. 13 and Saturday, Feb. 16.
- Their record this season in Liga Nacional is 2-3-3 (9 points) with 5 goals for and 8 goals against. Guastatoya is currently 8th in the league standings, out of 12 teams.
Referee: Kimbell Kerstin Ward (SKN)
Assistant referees: Graeme Asif Browne (SKN), Mario Keino Parry (SKN)
Fourth official: Tristley Jansen Bassue (SKN)