At last the end is in sight, BBVA Compass Stadium is ready to open its doors to the world on Saturday and things will never be the same. The skies will open, rays of light will shine upon us and a chorus of angels will sing...alright, not really, but we're all excited and ready for the weekend.
However, there is business to be taken care of tomorrow night in New Jersey as the Dynamo travel to Red Bull Arena to face the New York Red Bulls in another important early season Eastern Conference match-up.
After a shaky start, the Red Bulls are recovered nicely despite having an injury report as long as most kid's Christmas wish list. Some of those injured players are coming back and Hans Backe has the dilemma of trying to decide whether to return previous starters back to the line-up or to ride the hot hand, so to speak, of the younger players that have fueled their improved play.
Rafa Marquez's suspension is over and Roy Miller and Juan Agudelo are fit again as well. Considering how well the defense played for Backe in their 1-0 win over the Galaxy, you'd think he won't make too many changes, but this is easily one of the more unpredictable coaches in the league, so who knows what he'll do. Based on comments though, you get the sense you're going to see a similar lineup.
Houston's biggest advantage is rest. New York traveled across the country to play in Los Angeles and then came home, while the Dynamo have been off for over a week. There's no excuses for Houston to not be rested and focused for this match. In addition, Thierry Henry is still injured so the Dynamo need to take advantage of that and get points off the Red Bulls.
The Dynamo sit in seventh place in the conference, but considering the vast gap in matches player this isn't a big deal. However, it's about to become a big deal because the schedule will be picking up with the new stadium finally ready. The Dynamo will have several stretches with multiple games in a week so it's going to be important for them to follow in the footsteps of Sporting Kansas City last season and taking advantage of the home field as much as possible.
Fortunately, Brad Davis is nearly back to full strength following his calf injury and Colin Clark's suspension is completed as well. With the the exception of Kofi Sarkodie who is dealing with a minor injury, it's all hands on deck for Kinnear ahead of a busy week in which Houston will play New York, DC United and Portland.
Wednesday's match against New York isn't one the Dynamo have to win, but at least a point would be a nice way to conclude the long road trip they have faced.
Predicated Lineup: Hall; Hainault, Cameron, Boswell, Ashe; Moffat, Clark, Davis, Camargo; Bruin, Ching
Predicted Score: 2-1 Dynamo