It's a short turnaround for the Houston Dynamo - after beating Montreal 3-0 Thursday night in the knockout round, they open a home and home tie with the New York Red Bulls at BBVA Compass Stadium on Sunday afternoon. It will be the fifth match in a run that will see them play six matches in eighteen days, and it'll be vital for the Dynamo to be able to keep their players rested and healthy.
For the healthy part of it, we can turn to the injury report, which is thankfully almost clear:
OUT: Jermaine Taylor – Left foot fracture
Taylor's absence is already known, and that will make the roles of Bobby Boswell and Eric Brunner that much more defined, without a real centerback to replace either of them. Sure, Warren Creavalle and Ricardo Clark can slide back to cover them, but that takes their presence away from where they're needed. New York is a side that loves to wreak havoc on the back four of their opponents, so keeping our best available players on the pitch will be vital.
As for the other positions, the availability of players like Andrew Driver, Alex Lopez, Omar Cummings, and Cam Weaver ensure the Dynamo a number of capable replacements in the midfield and up front, something that could be the difference in a close contest.