Competition: Major League Soccer – New York Red Bulls vs. Houston Dynamo
Venue: Red Bull Arena – Saturday, March 19 – 19:00 ET (23:00 GMT)
Match Odds: NY Red Bulls 4/6 – Draw 14/5 – Houston 4/1
The reigning Supporters’ Shield holders have endured a very tough opening two games so far this season and are yet to score a goal. They lost their opener at home against Toronto and last weekend fell to a 3-0 thumping away at Montreal.
Although it is early doors this is still a worrying factor for Jesse Marsch and he will have his side fully prepared to take on an inform Houston side. Red Bulls are currently propping up the Eastern Conference and nothing short of a win here will be good enough.
If the Red Bulls are to challenge for the Supporters’ Shield again this campaign they are going to need to be far more impressive than they have been so far. It isn’t all doom and gloom as we are still early into the new campaign but Marsch’s side cannot afford another lapsed performance here and they will already have some impatient fans heading into the tie.
Houston come to Red Bull Arena in a prime position. They are unbeaten in their opening two outings and have looked impressive.
They come into the tie off the back of their amazing 5-0 demolition job over FC Dallas last weekend, a result that not only shocked fans but sent out a message to the rest of the Western Conference.
Owen Coyle will be delighted to see his side sitting third in the West but will be more than aware of how difficult this tie can be.
Dynamo have really struggled on the road in recent times in MLS and they won just twice away from home last season. Starting with an away win here would be an enormous boost.Embed from Getty Images
New York Red Bulls have just the one injury concern heading into this tie as Damien Perrinelle remains out.
Houston Dynamo have five injury concerns. Collen Warner is out, while Tyler Deric, DaMarcus Beasley, Giles Barnes and Cristian Maidana are all doubts.
New York Red Bulls’ form: L/L
Houston Dynamo’s form: D/W
Key Stat: New York Red Bulls are unbeaten in their last 13 home matches against Houston in all competitions.
Key Player: Sacha Klještan – The NYRB midfielder can help lead his side here after their poor start to the season. If he can get on the ball, control the game and keep things simple this weekend it will enable his teammates to regain some of their lost confidence.Embed from Getty Images
New York Red Bulls 2-1 Houston Dynamo – Red Bulls to continue their good run of form at home against Houston and pick up their first win of the season in a very competitive tie. Dynamo have conceded at least two in their last six away outings and that combined with their poor away form will likely cost them here, despite a good start to the campaign.