The Houston Dynamo and one of Mexico’s top teams Pachuca square off in the first leg of the Concacaf Champions Cup semi-finals at Robertson Stadium. The Dynamo will juggle early season fitness plus the importance of a result against one of Mexico’s top teams. Here are few things to consider as the challenge is a great one:
*Pachuca has a much larger player budget, in fact the Dynamo’s 2.1 million dollar player budget is miniscule in comparison to Pachuca. They have grander depth and quality of players than the Dynamo for those reasons.
*Pachuca was formed in 1904 while the Dynamo are in their second season in Houston after being re-located from San Jose.
* Pachuca arrived in Houston yesterday and did an hour and half session under head coach Enrique Meza at Robertson stadium doing some light training and a scrimmage. Noticeably absent was star Colombian goalkeeper Miguel Calero who arrived later that night to Houston.
*Pachuca’s next Mexican league game is against Tigres.
*According to head coach Dominic Kinnear Brian Ching will get significant minutes in this match while Dwayne DeRosario may perform in a substitutes role, look for his arrival in the second half potentially. He has been bothered by a hamstring.
*Zach Wells will get the start in goal for the Dynamo in this historic international.
*Tactics: The Dynamo will look to pressure Pachuca who are an excellent possession and passing team capable of playing in tight areas. Expect a fast start from the Dynamo who would benefit largely from the first goal from a confidence standpoint against the Copa Sudamerica champions. Will they be able to do it at Robertson on a smaller surface? The Dynamo will need outstanding performances from many in this one but the word is the player’s are “up” for the challenge of one of Mexico’s best clubs.
*DC United plays Chivas tomorrow night at RFK Stadium a game that can be seen on the Fox Soccer Channel. Tonite’s Dynamo match is expected to draw 10,000 yet the understanding of the importance of this game has not seemed to be grasped locally.
The winner of the Concacaf Champions Cup goes on to the FIFA World Club Championship in Tokyo, Japan. The Dynamo will play the return leg at Pachuca in April.