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Searching for win number one: 3 things to watch

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The Dynamo travel to Kansas City, still looking for their first win of 2020.

MLS: Houston Dynamo at Sporting Kansas City William Purnell-USA TODAY Sports

And then there was one. That’s not a good thing, though. After the LA Galaxy and expansion side Inter Miami registered wins over the weekend, the Dynamo sit alone as the one team in Major League Soccer yet to win in the 2020 season. Coming off a 0-0 draw against rivals FC Dallas on Friday, the task gets much tougher Tuesday night.

The Dynamo head to Kansas City tonight to take on Western Conference leaders Sporting Kansas City. This will be Houston’s second trip of 2020 to Children’s Mercy Park, but the Dynamo would love to forget about that first trip all together. In the final game before the season was shut down for the COVID-19 pandemic, the Dynamo were played off the pitch, losing 4-0 to Sporting Kansas City.

How does Houston avoid a repeat of the night in March? Here are three things to watch.

David vs Goliath

The Dynamo sit bottom of the Western Conference table but Sporting Kansas City enter Tuesday’s game unbeaten in the regular season, after a 2-1 win over Minnesota United Friday night. Kansas City trail the Columbus Crew, who lost on Monday night, by one point in the Supporter’s Shield race. Their unbeaten start to the regular season has been sparked by an offense that has scored fifteen goals, tied for the most in league play this year, led by newcomer Alan Pulido. Sporting’s defense has also played well this season conceding just six goals. Houston face a challenging task tonight on both ends of the pitch, trying to find the back of the net while keeping the potent SKC attack off the score-sheet.

Midfield mix-up?

Coming off of Friday’s game, we might expect Tab Ramos to shake the lineup a bit and give some guys rest. The midfield could definitely be an area where this occurs. Newcomer Wilfried Zahibo should be available tonight and could make his Dynamo debut. Boniek Garcia and Tomas Martinez could also find their way in to the starting eleven, not just to provide some rest, but to inject some life in to the Houston attack.

Urgency

Look, we’ve harped on the fact that the Dynamo have yet to win a game but this team needs to find its winning ways and fast. Ramos spoke to the media this week about the lack of results and if he feels their is a state of emergency. “Yeah, of course. That is always there, I want to win every game,” Ramos said. “The urgency is not there because we haven’t won. The urgency with this team and with the way I want this team thinking is the urgency is every game, always. Whether we come from winning or we come from losing, we have to try to win, always. That is always an urgency. So, to be perfectly honest - nothing has changed. We have the urgency, it is how we are learning as we are going along. No question, we need to win this game. We have to play every game like it is a final. When we get to the point when we are comfortable because we won a lot, maybe we can afford to not think that way. We are so far from that point.”

Tab knows this team isn’t ready yet, he knows they need to keep building. But he sees it. He has a vision of what this team can be and to continue down that path they need to start putting results together. Getting three points tonight in Kansas City would be a massive boost to that journey.