Houston Dynamo FC hosts FC Dallas in a heated matchup between interstate rivals trying to salvage their seasons.
Both Sides Desperate for Win in Texas Derby
While neither team has had a great season, both teams will be playing as if their season is on the line in Saturday’s Texas Derby between Houston Dynamo FC and FC Dallas. Both teams are outside of the playoff picture and getting desperate to accumulate points for the stretch run. Meanwhile, after Houston and Dallas have tied each of their first two meetings this season, bragging rights for the entire season are on the line in this rivalry game.
According to BetUS, Houston is a slight favorite at home with a moneyline of +110. Meanwhile, FC Dallas has a moneyline of +240 with a moneyline of +265 listed for a draw. This match also has an over/under of three total goals being scored.
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At the moment, FC Dallas is a little closer to a playoff position. The Toros are sitting on 37 points, putting them six points behind LAFC for the final playoff spot in the Western Conference. The problem is that FC Dallas has just nine games left to play while most other teams in MLS have 10 or 11 games left on the schedule.
Houston is in a similar position with just nine games left to play this season. Of course, the Orange Crush is in an even more precarious position with 23 points, a full 10 points behind LAFC for the final playoff spot. In fact, the Dynamo’s 23 points are tied for the fourth-fewest in MLS this season.
Houston was so close to securing three points earlier this week but gave up an equalizer to the LA Galaxy. It would have been the Dynamo’s second straight win on the heels of a 16-game winless streak and a sign of life that the Orange Crush desperately needs right now. Instead, Houston has taken just five points from the team’s last nine matches, which is why they are in such a precarious position.
The silver lining for Houston is that leading scorer Fabrice Picault is starting to heat up, scoring three goals in the team’s last two matches. Houston has been held back more this season by their porous defense than the club’s inability to find the back of the net. With Picault heating up, there is a chance the Dynamo can keep the goals coming on Saturday against one of the worst defensive teams in the league.
Pepi in Your Step
Scoring goals has rarely been an issue for FC Dallas this season. Despite their position outside of the playoff picture, the Toros are among the top-10 teams in MLS in goals scored, with 75% of those goals coming via an assist. Dallas will be even more confident in their attack with leading scorer Ricardo Pepi back from his heroics with the United States National Team and Jader Obrian scoring twice against NYCFC earlier this week.
The problem for Dallas has been keeping other teams from scoring. The Toros have yielded 12 goals in their last five matches, causing them to settle for three draws and just two wins during that stretch despite scoring 13 goals of their own in those five matches. It’s almost a given that the Dallas defense will concede at least one or two goals, which is preventing them from winning games.
Can’t Seal the Deal
After these two teams played to a draw in two previous meetings this year, look for the third meeting to finish the same way. Dallas isn’t good enough offensively to hold onto a lead while Houston is starting to play a little better lately, allowing the Dynamo to keep pace with the Toros. Bet on this game to end in a 2-2 draw, which means the score will also go over the over/under of three goals.