Three Points: Houston Dynamo Close Two-Game Stretch Versus Eastern Conference Opponents against Nashville SC
HOUSTON - The Houston Dynamo return to BBVA Stadium on Wednesday to close a two-game stretch against teams from the Eastern Conference.
Houston looks to earn three points after falling 1-0 to Inter Miami CF on Saturday in Fort Lauderdale. A second half penalty kick secured three points for the expansion side and gave the Dynamo their sixth defeat of the season. Defensively, Maynor Figueroa and Matias Vera returned to the starting lineup after serving a one-game suspension for yellow card accumulation. Dynamo forward Mauro Manotas will be eligible for Wednesday's match after serving a one-game suspension for his ejection in the 2-0 victory over FC Dallas on Oct. 7.
This is the second meeting between both sides after the 1-1 draw and the third match for the Dynamo against an expansion side in 2020. Houston enters the match with a 0-1-1 record against expansion teams this season.
Nashville dropped a 2-1 decision on Sunday in Kansas to Sporting Kansas City. Nashville enters Wednesday's game with one victory in their last five games and three victories in their last 10 matches. Nashville SC will look to capitalize on set pieces after scoring their sixth set-piece goal of the year on Sunday. The expansion club has not found the back of the net often and enter the match against the Dynamo with 12 goals in favor and a 1-5-3 record on the road.
The Dynamo return to the road this weekend and face Minnesota United at Allianz Field on Sunday, Oct. 18.
Houston Dynamo vs. Nashville SC
Wednesday, Oct. 14 - 7:00 p.m. CDT
QuestTexas Ch. 55 (Glenn Davis, Eddie Robinson and Cindy Burbano)
TUDN Radio Houston 1010 AM (Daniel Mejia and Lester Gretsch)
Here are three key points ahead of Wednesday's game:
1. QUINTERO KEY FOR DYNAMO OFFENSE: Dynamo forward Darwin Quintero was limited to just one shot on Saturday, the fewest in five games and Saturday was the first game since Sept. 23 that Quintero did not contribute a goal or an assist in a match. Houston will look to the Colombian playmaker, who leads the team in goals with six and assists with eight, to breakdown one of the staunchest defenses in the league. The Colombian playmaker has been a catalyst all season for the Dynamo and he is tied with Nicolas Lodeiro for the second most assists in MLS. Quintero also leads the Western Conference in chances created with 42. The forward found Maynor Figueroa in the first meeting with Nashville SC for the equalizer and another point on the road.
2. MARIC LEADS THE WEST: Marko Maric has recorded 22 saves in the last five games, including eight in the 2-0 victory over FC Dallas on Oct. 3 at BBVA Stadium. The 24-year-old goalkeeper also earned his third clean sheet of the year on Oct. 3 and now leads shot stoppers in the Western Conference with 60 saves. Maric currently sits three saves shy of the top mark in MLS, which belongs to Sean Johnson at NYC FC. The Dynamo backline will look to limit the amount of shots Maric faces on Wednesday. Maric enters Wednesday's game with 91 shots faced this season, one shot shy of the top spot currently held by Clement Diop in Montreal.
3. WILLIS RETURNS TO BBVA STADIUM: Nashville SC goalkeeper Joe Willis returns to BBVA Stadium on Wednesday for his first match in Houston since joining Nashville during the offseason. Willis left the Dynamo after earning 44 victories for the club, the third most in franchise history. Willis also finished with 17 clean sheets for Houston and helped the club win its first Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup in 2018. Willis enters Wednesday's game with seven clean sheets and 48 saves in his first season in Tennessee. Former teammate Maynor Figueroa prevented his sixth clean sheet of the season with a late second half equalizer in the first meeting between both clubs on Sept. 26.
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