The Dynamo play the third game of their late August/early September six match in 19 day gauntlet. There is plenty of good news though as we hit the half way point. The Dynamo are 1-0-1, fresh off their first ever in Central America over C.D. FAS on Wednesday. More importantly, the team's depth (a word rarely associated with MLS sides) stood up well in the mid week, allowing Kinnear to hold back most of his starters ahead of this weekend's TFC match and this coming Thursday's trip to Honduras for their second CCL match.
The reason you I believe Kinnear went when his depth against FAS was both due to them being a beatable opponent and because the league result and Olimpia match are bigger. They Dynamo will have four days to recover from tonight's game so there's every reason to believe Kinnear will be able to be more aggressive with his lineup against a tougher CCL foe...but that's for Thursday.
Tonight's business is first and Toronto FC at home is a must win game. There are only nine league matches left for the Dynamo, including tonight, so Houston needs to pile up the points to both secure their playoff spot and try to avoid the wild-card match. It looks like the Dynamo, baring a total collapse will make the playoffs, but the Fire and DC United are right on their tails, pressing for third. Points are going to be at a premium and there are three points on the table that Houston should take tonight.
Since Toronto's last trip to BBVA Compass Stadium, they've leveled out a bit from the post new coach bump. Houston went on the road and got their first win in Canada against them a couple weeks ago and they won't be sneaking up on the Dynamo this time.
A fresh and rested Boniek Garcia, Mac Kandji, Calen Carr, Jermaine Taylor, Andre Hainault and Will Bruin, combined with limited minutes for Brad Davis means we should see a sharp and focused attack that will press the Toronto defense. There's also the small matter of Houston being quite good at set pieces and Toronto not being the best at defending them.
No new injuries to report. Alex Dixon remains out recovering from a heat illness, while Ricardo Clark is still questionable with the ankle injury, but I expect he'll start with Moffat going 90 minutes on Wednesday.
Predicted Lineup: Hall; Hainault, Taylor, Boswell, Ashe; Garcia, R. Clark, Davis; Carr, Bruin, Kandji
Predicted Score: Dynamo 3-0. We're rested (this sounds crazy but it's generally true...bench just might a bit thin tonight), we're focused, we know these points are important. There will be goals.