The Houston Dynamo fell for the first time in the 2020 MLS regular season as they dropped a 4-0 result to Sporting Kansas City at Children’s Mercy Park this evening.
The Dynamo leapt out of the gates and controlled play in the early going, using a high press to pin Sporting into their own half and creating multiple dangerous opportunities. The Dynamo earned back-to-back corner kicks in the seventh minute after generating constant pressure to begin the game. Academy product Memo Rodriguez found defender Maynor Figueroa inside the box on the second corner kick, but his header was off target.
Sporting Kansas City forward Alan Pulido gave the hosts the lead in the 16th minute after he pounced on a one-touch pass from forward Khiry Shelton inside the box. The goal came on Sporting’s first shot of the night.
Midfielder Roger Espinoza doubled Kansas City’s lead in the 26th minute off a free kick at the near post. Forward Johnny Russell found Pulido inside the box and the Mexican forward headed the ball back toward the near post, where Espinoza finished the play for his first goal of the season.
The second half started much like the first, with the Dynamo coming out on the front foot and taking the fight to Sporting over the first 15 minutes, but were unable to capitalize. Midfielder Matías Vera won the ball at midfield in the 49th minute for Houston’s first opportunity of the second half. The Argentine midfielder laid the ball off to an oncoming Rodriguez on the left flank. Rodriguez dribbled into the box before ripping a low left-footed shot toward the back post, forcing a save with a low shot to the far post.
Kinda and Pulido combined for the third goal of the game in the 66th minute. The Mexican forward found Kinda near the heart of the box and the midfielder controlled the ball to create space for a shot that beat the Dynamo shot stopper at the far post. The final goal of the evening came in the 77th minute off a corner kick. Midfielder Gianluca Busio’s cross eventually fell to Khiry Shelton at the edge of the six yard box for his first goal of the season.
Houston forward Darwin Quintero, signed in the offseason, made his Dynamo debut when he came on for midfielder Tomás Martínez in the 57th minute. The Colombian was active in his 33-minute shift and got on the end of a well-placed centering pass from forward Mauro Manotas in the 86th minute, but his shot missed high.
The Dynamo return to BBVA Stadium on March 14 to host the reigning MLS Cup champion Seattle Sounders FC. Kickoff for that match is set for 7:30 p.m. CDT, and tickets start at just $25.