Greetings from Houston, where D.C. United becomes the first visiting club to play at the new BBVA Compass Stadium twice. As you recall, the first visit didn’t go so well: a 1-0 Dynamo victory in May that wasn’t as compelling as the tight scoreline indicated.
This time around, United is fully healthy and acclimated to the summer heat, so no issues there. DCU finds itself three points behind Sporting Kansas City (36), and thanks to Seattle’s 2-2 draw at New York earlier today, a point ahead of the Red Bulls (32). Chicago is on 31 points, followed by Houston at 25. After tonight, each of the top five clubs in the Eastern Conference will have played 19 times, with 15 remaining.
In case you missed it earlier, Chris Pontius will join Dwayne De Rosario on Ben Olsen’s all-star squad for the Chelsea match a week from Wednesday at PPL Park. No Dynamo players were selected, perhaps adding an extra touch of motivation tonight.
Kickoff: 9 p.m. ET.
TV: Galavision (nationally), Comcast SportsNet (Mid-Atlantic).
DCU: Hamid; Russell, Jakovic, McDonald, Woolard; Cruz, Kitchen, Boskovic, Pontius; De Rosario, Santos. Subs: Willis, Korb, Saragosa, DeLeon, Neal, Wolff, Salihi. (Dudar didn’t travel because of a family emergency in Washington.)
HOU: Hall; Hainault, Boswell, Taylor, Ashe; Cameron, Camargo, Davis; Garcia, Bruin, Kandji. Subs: Deric, Creavalle, Sturgis, Watson, Ownby, Carr, Ching.
Your pregame, in-game and postgame thoughts are welcome in our comments section.