After a 2021 season that most Dynamo fans would like to forget, a new day has arrived that should bring some form of excitement, schedule release day. The Dynamo will open the year at PNC Stadium on February 27, hosting Real Salt Lake for Opening Day presented by PNC Bank. Houston will open the 2022 season with eight of their first 12 games in the heart of downtown Houston.
The Dynamo will face each team from the Western Conference twice and this includes a home-and-away series against Nashville SC, who makes the switch after competing in the Eastern Conference for two seasons. Houston will also face eight teams from the Eastern Conference in 2022. The Dynamo will be featured on national TV 6 times this upcoming season, all on Univision or UniMas.
The Texas Derby games, now that Austin FC joined the league last year are always games to look forward to. Since there are a number of them now, I’m not including them in my five games below but here are the derby games in 2022:
- Saturday, April 23 at FC Dallas
- Saturday, April 30 vs Austin FC
- Saturday, July 9 vs FC Dallas
- Tuesday, July 12 at Austin FC
With the full schedule now out, what are 5 games to look forward to in 2021, let’s take a look?
Sunday, February 27 vs Real Salt Lake
Houston kicks off the season at home with Western Conference finalists Real Salt Lake coming to town. Former Dynamo assistant coach Pablo Mastroeni is now the head coach at the Utah club and the Claret and Cobalt will look to build off their strong finish in 2021. This first match, at home, will prove to be a good barometer for the Dynamo.
Saturday, May 14 vs Nashville SC
Nashville has made the move to the Western Conference after playing in the East for their first few seasons. While this match will also be a good test for the Dynamo, Nashville made the Eastern Conference semifinal in 2021, what will be happening surrounding this match is the exciting part. The club will be celebrating the 10 year anniversary of PNC Stadium opening. (Can you believe it’s been 10 years?) The stadium officially opened on May 12, 2022 and the club will likely have a lot of events set up for this celebration and game against Nashville.
Wednesday, May 18 vs Seattle Sounders FC
Perennial contenders Seattle Sounders come to town for a midweek meeting in May. This game will mark the end of a stretch for the Dynamo where they play 7 playoff teams from last year in their first 12 games, 8 of those 12 at PNC Stadium. You talk about making a statement for a new regime? Coming out of these 12 games could certainly lay down a marker that the rest of MLS will have to pay attention to. Will that happen? Let’s worry about getting a coach first and then go from there!
Sunday, July 3 vs Charlotte FC
The new kids on the block (no, not the boy band) come to Houston to celebrate Independence Day in 2022. Charlotte kicks off its inaugural season in Major League Soccer in 2022 and by July we should have a pretty good idea of what they are as an expansion team. Expansion teams can now be judged on a scale from Seattle to Cincinnati. Expect Charlotte to fit somewhere in the middle there.
Sunday, October 9 vs LA Galaxy
The Dynamo will close the regular season on Decision Day at PNC Stadium against Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez and the LA Galaxy. Does Houston always play the Galaxy to finish a season? It feels that way, doesn’t it? The Dynamo and Galaxy previously met on Decision Day in 2011, 2018 and 2019, with Houston winning all three times.
Which games are you most excited to see? Let us know in the comments.