Preview: Houston battle NY Red Bulls for 1st place in East

Top spot on the line as ex-Dynamo star De Rosario returns to Robertson Stadium

Houston Preview DL

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The Houston Dynamo meet the New York Red Bulls for the second time
this season when the Eastern Conference clubs face off Saturday at
Robertson Stadium. The teams played to a 1-1 draw in early April at Red
Bull Arena. The Dynamo stopped a two-game losing slide last time out
with a scoreless draw at Real Salt Lake last weekend. The Red Bulls saw
their unbeaten streak crash to a halt at four games in a 3-2 home loss
to Chivas USA last Sunday.

TV: MSG; Matchday Live

Radio: WQBU 92.7 FM

DOWNLOAD RED BULLS GAME NOTES

REFEREE: Juan Guzman. SAR (bench): Greg Barkey; JAR (opposite): Ian Anderson; 4th: Baldomero Toledo
Guzman's MLS Career: 2 games; FC/gm: 33.0; Y/gm: 3.0; R: 1; pens: 1

INJURY REPORT: HOUSTON DYNAMO – OUT: FW Calen Carr (concussion); FW Brian Ching (L plantar fascitis); MF Danny Cruz (R knee hyperextension)

NEW YORK RED BULLS – OUT: MF Carl Robinson (R knee contusion)

INTERNATIONAL ABSENCES: HOU: Kofi Sarkodie (U.S. U-20 national team) … NY: Sacir Hot (U.S. U-20 national team)
SUSPENDED: none

WARNINGS:
SUSPENDED NEXT YELLOW CARD: none
SUSPENDED AFTER TWO YELLOW CARDS: NY: Luke Rodgers

HEAD-TO-HEAD:
ALL-TIME (11 meetings): Dynamo 2 wins, 12 goals … Red Bulls 3 wins, 12 goals … Ties 6
AT HOUSTON (5 meetings): Dynamo 2 wins, 8 goals … Red Bulls 0 wins, 3 goals … Ties 3

- The teams are meeting for the second time this season. They traded
goals early in the second half before settling for a 1-1 draw, April 2
at Red Bull Arena.

- The Dynamo are unbeaten at Robertson Stadium in league play vs. New
York, with two wins and three draws in five all-time meetings.

- But, the Red Bulls won the second leg of their 2008 conference
semifinal series, 3-0, in Houston, on their way to MLS Cup. New York has
come away with a point on each of their last two league meetings in
Houston.

- The Dynamo have never won a game against the Red Bulls in New Jersey.
The Red Bulls have won three of the six home league meetings all-time
with three draws; the teams also played to a draw in an Eastern
Conference Semifinal Series.

Coaches record: Dominic Kinnear v NY: P16 W5 L4 D7 … Hans Backe vs. HOU: P3 W1 L0 D2
LAST MEETING (MLS): 4/2: NY 1, HOU 1 (Richards 47 – Weaver 50)

- Coming off the bench at halftime, newly acquired Canadian
international Dwayne De Rosario quickly made his mark for NY. De Rosario
sliced a ball from the middle of the field to Dane Richards, who freed
himself with a cutback and fired past Houston goalkeeper Tally Hall in
the 47th minute.

- But Houston responded with a goal of their own just three minutes
later. Will Bruin flicked a header over the top of the Red Bulls
defense, and as New York goalkeeper Bouna Coundoul came off his line,
Cam Weaver lofted the ball over Coundoul.

- NEW YORK RED BULLS (4-1-3-2): Bouna Coundoul - Jan Gunnar Solli,
Rafael Marquez, Tim Ream, Roy Miller - Teemu Tainio - Dane Richards
(Luke Rodgers 78), Mehdi Ballouchy (Dwayne De Rosario 46), Joel Lindpere
- Juan Agudelo, Thierry Henry.

- HOUSTON DYNAMO (4-1-3-2): Tally Hall – Hunter Freeman, Andre Hainault,
Bobby Boswell, Corey Ashe – Lovel Palmer – Danny Cruz (Mike Chabala
82), Geoff Cameron, Brad Davis – Will Bruin (Alex Dixon 73), Brian Ching
(Cam Weaver 39).

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NEW YORK RED BULLS
The New York Red Bulls had their unbeaten streak end at four games,
falling 3-2 to Chivas USA on Sunday evening at Red Bull Arena. The Red
Bulls have 15 points from 9 games, still leading the Eastern Conference.

NEW YORK RED BULLS - LAST MATCH

- After a power outage delayed kickoff, Chivas USA's Justin Braun got
the match off to a flying start after five minutes. Taking a pass from
teammate Nick LaBrocca on the left, he cut across the penalty area and
curled a right-footed shot into the back of the net.

- The Red Bulls responded in the 21st minute. Defender Rafa Márquez
looped a long ball over the top to Thierry Henry, who took two touches
and coolly slotted a right-footed shot past Chivas USA goalkeeper Dan
Kennedy.

- But Chivas, and Braun, restored their lead shortly afterward. Heath
Pearce floated a free kick beyond the far post in the 31st minute, but
Ante Jazic got in a touch to keep the ball in play and found Braun, who
squeezed the ball between New York goalkeeper Bouna Coundoul’s legs.

- New York again answered quickly, this time when Luke Rodgers was
tugged to the ground by Pearce while making a run in the box, and Dwayne
De Rosario thumped the resulting penalty kick into the back of the net
in the 35th minute.

- Yet Braun and Chivas had one final answer. In the 56th minute, Chivas
USA midfielder Simon Elliott sent a free kick towards the top of the
six-yard box, and an unmarked Alejandro Moreno snapped a header off the
post. It bounced directly to Braun, who tapped home the rebound to
complete his hat trick.

- Red Bulls head coach Hans Backe made one change to the team that
played to a 1-1 draw with the LA Galaxy at The Home Depot Center. Teemu
Tainio returned to the lineup for Mehdi Ballouchy.

- NEW YORK RED BULLS (4-1-3-2): Bouna Coundoul - Jan Gunnar Solli, Tim
Ream, Rafael Marquez, Roy Miller (Stephen Keel 89) - Teemu Tainio (Mehdi
Ballouchy 71) - Dane Richards (Juan Agudelo 71), Dwayne De Rosario,
Joel Lindpere - Thierry Henry, Luke Rodgers.

NEW YORK RED BULLS - TEAM NEWS

- While the Red Bulls saw their four-game unbeaten streak come to an
against Chivas USA, they have scored 11 goals in that time – and Thierry
Henry scored his fifth goal in that same stretch.

- The Red Bulls had allowed just three goals total through their first
eight games – a total that was matched in one night by Chivas.

- "We were walking, hoping the next guy is going to take responsibility
for clearing the ball and that's not the way we're supposed to do it,"
said defender Jan Gunnar Solli. "Everybody needs to look in the mirror
and make sure to get the clearance away next time. I take responsibility
for the first set play, and I'm sure there is somebody who could have
done better on the third goal."

- Of the six goals on the season allowed by the Red Bulls, three have come from set pieces – in the last two games.

- “Conceding two goals like that on set plays is very sloppy,” Red Bulls
coach Hans Backe said. “We responded OK ... but overall it is an effort
that you don’t win too many games (with) in this league. You have to
work much, much harder.”

- Teemu Tainio was able to return to the lineup after missing the LA
match with a groin strain. But Carl Robinson, who can fill Tainio’s
role, suffered a knee injury in the midweek friendly vs. Montréal.

- “What we did so well in the games before, that was really playing
together well as a defense,” Tainio said. “That didn’t happen tonight,
we didn’t all play defense. Too many mistakes.”

- Dwayne De Rosario will be returning to Houston again as a visiting
player, his first trip there with New York. In his last visit to his
former club, he scored two goals with Toronto FC; he had an assist
against the Dynamo in his Red Bulls debut on April 2.

- “It was very difficult to leave [Houston],” De Rosario said. “Being
with Dominic [Kinnear] for quite some time, we created a very good
relationship and it was the same with quite a few of the players.”

HOUSTON DYNAMO
The Houston Dynamo saw their winless run stretched to three matches,
though they came away from Rio Tinto Stadium with a scoreless draw
against Real Salt Lake. The Dynamo have 13 points from 10 games on the
season, sitting in a three-way tie for third place in the Eastern
Conference.

HOUSTON DYNAMO - LAST MATCH

- Houston goalkeeper Tally Hall made just one save. RSL goalkeeper Nick
Rimando was called upon to make three saves, including a pair on Dynamo
rookie Will Bruin, both coming in short order just after the hour mark.

- Dynamo head coach Dominic Kinnear made three changes to the team that
lost 2-1 to Toronto FC at BMO Field. Corey Ashe came into the back for
Eddie Robinson, Colin Clark returned to the midfield for Je-Vaughn
Watson, and Will Bruin started up top for Koke.

- HOUSTON DYNAMO (4-4-2): Tally Hall - Hunter Freeman, Andre Hainault,
Bobby Boswell, Corey Ashe - Colin Clark (Je-Vaughn Watson 67), Lovel
Palmer, Geoff Cameron, Brad Davis - Will Bruin (Koke 69), Cam Weaver
(Jason Garey 87).

HOUSTON DYNAMO - TEAM NEWS

- The Dynamo were shut out for the first time since the season opener,
but still came away from Real Salt Lake with a point in their scoreless
draw.

- “Both teams had some chances,” Kinnear said. “Both teams put
themselves in position to maybe get a goal. It didn’t work out. Nick
Rimando made some good saves. We were close a couple of times. So were
they. Both teams knocked the ball around and competed well for 90
minutes.”

- It was the second defensive shutout for the Dynamo, their first since
April 17. Tally Hall was called upon to make just a single save for his
third career shutout.

- “You look back and we had chances to put the ball in the back of the
net. With a little more composure and that final pass, we could of come
out of here with three (points),” Houston midfielder Geoff Cameron said.

- After Eddie Robinson was given his first start of the season and Corey
Ashe going to the substitutes’ bench for the first time, the Dynamo
returned to their first-choice back four, with André Hainault again
sliding into central defense.

- “You’ve got Corey [Ashe] on the left ,who can take the ball out of the
back, and I think he played some good balls there, and Bobby [Boswell]
and I communicate pretty well, so it was pretty good,” Hainault said. “I
didn’t really think of our [strong] play until after the game, because I
was so focused on us trying to get that win, but it’s nice and it’s a
good sign.”