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Pick the Houston Dynamo Starting XI against Sporting Kansas City: Part 1

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Who do you want to start against Sporting Kansas City?

MLS: U.S. Open Cup-Sporting KC at Houston Dynamo Erik Williams-USA TODAY Sports

The Houston Dynamo are back in a playoff position after their 2-1 victory over Minnesota United FC. That helped push them from seventh place in the Western Conference to fifth, but it’s a very tight race and every result matters. To put the pressure on even more, of their final three games, two of them are against rivals Sporting Kansas City who currently sit in second place in the West. The Dynamo will play SKC Wednesday at BBVA Compass Stadium before travelling to Children’s Mercy Park in Kansas to play SKC again. It’s a SKC DGW.

Both clubs will be without key players, but the Dynamo definitely have some players more than capable of filling in. Romell Quioto and Alberth Elis are both with the Honduran National Team while DaMarcus Beasley is with the USMNT, and Adolfo Machado is with Panama’s National Team. Quioto and Elis have both been huge parts of the Dynamo offense this season while Beasley and Machado have been staples in the defense. George Malki (ACL), Oscar Boniek Garcia (right knee injury), and Memo Rodriguez (right knee strain) appear as OUT on the injury report. Philippe Senderos is listed as probable, but he featured last Thursday in the Dynamo Charities Cup so I think he’ll be available for selection.

With so many players missing, it opens up a lot of playing time for new players and with this game being incredibly important, Wilmer Cabrera’s choices must be the right ones. Up top, I’d expect Cubo Torres to start alongside Mauro Manotas and Vicente Sanchez. There are arguments to be made that Andrew Wenger, Alex, or Tomas Martinez should start up top, but I think Cabrera picks Cubo and Manotas with Sanchez who has been a game changer for the Dynamo late in their season.

In midfield, I’m not sure if Juan David Cabezas is available. He isn’t on the injury report, but he left the game against the LA Galaxy and wasn’t in the lineup against Minnesota United or in the Dynamo Charities Cup game. I think if he’s available, he starts, but if not then the job goes to Eric Alexander. Next to him, I’d anticipate Ricardo Clark and Tomas Martinez. Clark provides some defensive cover while Martinez was praised by Cabrera following the game against Cruz Azul. We could see Alex and Martinez start together, but I just think this is what we’re more likely to see.

Along the back line I’d predict Dylan Remick to start for DaMarcus Beasley at LB with Leonardo and Philippe Senderos in central defense, and A. J. DeLaGarza at RB. If it isn’t Senderos in for Machado, expect Jalil Anibaba.

Houston Dynamo - Football tactics and formations

My Projected Starting Lineup

So who do you want to see lineup against SKC? Let us know and feel free to share your choices in the comments section below!