"By The Numbers" is a season-long series presented by the Kansas Department of Transportation that gives a statistical preview of every Sporting match. To visit the series archive, click here.
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A longstanding Western Conference rivalry will continue Wednesday night when Sporting Kansas City (2-1-1, 7 points) travels to face Houston Dynamo FC (1-1-2, 5 points) at BBVA Stadium near downtown Houston. Kickoff is slated for 7:30 p.m. CT as Manager Peter Vermes' men seek their second consecutive win after ousting Austin FC by a 2-1 scoreline on Sunday.

Wednesday's contest will be shown live on Bally Sports Kansas City Plus, BallySports.com and the new Bally Sports app, with three hours of live coverage beginning at 7 p.m. CT.

With both teams facing quick turnarounds in this midweek matchup, we take a statistical look at how Sporting and Houston stack up in our newest edition of By the Numbers, presented by the Kansas Department of Transportation.


  • Sporting are 5-2-2 in their last nine regular season meetings against Houston dating back to October 2017, posting four shutouts during that stretch.
  • Sporting and Houston took two wins apiece in last year's regular season series. The teams combined for 17 goals in those four meetings.
  • In two visits to Houston last season, Sporting lost 2-1 on Sept. 5 and prevailed 2-1 on Oct. 3.
  • Sporting forward Alan Pulido has three goals and an assist in three career appearances against Houston, including a brace in his team's 2-1 win at BBVA Compass Stadium on Oct. 3, 2020.
  • Sporting are one of two teams with two regular season road wins at Houston since the start of 2018 (Seattle Sounders FC).
  • Houston leads the all-time series in the regular season (12-10-13) and in all competitions (18-15-14).
  • Sporting has faced Houston 36 times in all competitions since 2011, more than any other opponent, and posted a 14-12-10 record during that stretch.
  • Sporting defender Graham Zusi has five career assists against Houston in the regular season, the most of any Kansas City player against the Dynamo all-time.
  • In the all-time regular season series, Sporting have scored 25 of their 46 goals against Houston after the 60th minute.

Houston Dynamo FC

  • MLS record:1-1-2, 5 points
  • MLS standings: 11th in West
  • MLS home record: 1-0-1 (3 GF, 2 GA)
  • First four matches: W-L-T-T
  • Last match: Tied 1-1 at FC Dallas on May 8
  • Houston is one of four MLS teams (along with Sporting, Real Salt Lake and San Jose) that has scored and conceded at least one goal in every game this season.
  • Houston has kept 11 clean sheets in 95 regular season matches dating back to the start of 2018, the fewest of any team that has been in the league since then.
  • Houston's four goals have been scored by four different players: former Sporting winger Tyler Pasher, midfielder Memo Rodriguez and forwards Fafa Picault and Maxi Urruti.
  • Similarly, Houston's four assists have come from four different players: Pasher, Picault, midfielder Joe Corona and defender Adam Lundkvist.
  • Pasher leads Houston with eight chances created. He is questionable for Wednesday's match with a hip ailment.
  • Rodriguez ranks fourth in MLS with 14 shots, while Urruti is close behind with 12.
  • Houston ranks third to last in MLS in both passing accuracy (73.6%) and possession (44.7%).

Sporting Kansas City

  • MLS record:2-1-1, 7 points
  • MLS standings: 5th in West
  • MLS away record: 1-1-0 (3 GF, 4 GA)
  • First four matches: W-T-L-W
  • Last match: Won 2-1 vs. Austin FC on May 9
  • Sporting's 6-3-2 regular season road record since the start of 2020 is tied for the best in MLS (Colorado Rapids).
  • Sporting has secured six points from losing positions this season, the most in MLS. The club has gained eight total points from trailing positions in each of the last two seasons.
  • The team to score first in Sporting’s first four matches has yet to win (0-3-1).
  • Sporting are one of four MLS teams (along with Houston, Real Salt Lake and San Jose) that has scored and conceded at least one goal in every game this season.
  • Sporting have scored in 24 of their last 25 regular season matches since the start of 2020, including 13 of 14 away from home.
  • Sporting's expected goals total against Austin on Sunday was 3.7, the highest of any team in an MLS match this year.
  • Sporting had eight big chances against Austin on Sunday, the most for the club in an MLS match since Opta began tracking the stat in 2010.
  • Sporting had 25 shot attempts on Sunday after totaling 23 shots through their first three matches combined.
  • Forward Johnny Russell’s eight chances created against Austin were the most in the Opta era by a Sporting player.
  • Sporting's 9.0 fouls committed per game are the fewest in MLS. Similarly, their 9.0 fouls suffered per game are the second-fewest in the league.
  • Sporting are 7-1-0 in the regular season when Alan Pulido, Khiry Shelton and Johnny Russell start together in attack.
  • Defender Andreu Fontas ranks fourth in MLS with 21 clearances.
  • Defender Luis Martins ranks third in MLS with 22 crosses from open play.
  • With the recent signing of 18-year-old defender Kayden Pierre, Sporting leads MLS with 12 Academy products on its current roster.

Milestones and Miscellany

  • In Sunday's win over Austin, defender Graham Zusi set an all-time club record with his 295th regular season appearance for the club.
  • In Sunday's win over Austin, captain Johnny Russell made his 100th appearance for Sporting in all competitions.

Recent #HOUvSKC meetings (all competitions)

  • Regular season record vs. Houston: 10-12-13
  • All-competitions record vs. Houston: 15-18-14
T 1-1
Yohan Croizet and Alberth Elis trade second-half goals in cagey stalemate
W 1-0
Johnny Russell nets early header on assist from Graham Smith
W 4-0
Alan Pulido, Roger Espinoza, Gadi Kinda and Khiry Shelton score in dominant Children's Mercy Park home opener
L 2-5
Darwin Quintero brace and goals from Alberth Elis, Christian Ramirez and Niko Hansen pace Houston to win as Sporting scores through Gadi Kinda and Johnny Russell
L 1-2
Erik Hurtado gives Sporting a first-half lead, but Houston rallies in the second half behind Alberth Elis and Mauro Manotas strikes
W 2-1
Alan Pulido strikes in both halves before Sam Junqua nets Houston consolation goal

Team Stats (2021 regular season)

(Source: Opta; MLS rank in parenthesis)


<strong>Category (per game)</strong>
Goals scored
1.50 (t-7th)
1.25 (t-12th)
Goals conceded
1.50 (t-19th)
1.25 (t-10th)
12.0 (t-15th)
13.5 (t-8th)
Shots on goal
4.3 (t-13th)
4.3 (t-13th)
Shooting accuracy
47.2% (14th)
50.0% (t-9th)
Shot conversion rate
12.5% (t-10th)
9.3% (t-16th)
Shots faced
11.0 (t-9th)
13.5 (t-19th)
Passing accuracy
78.7% (21st)
73.6% (25th)
47.8% (21st)
44.7% (25th)
Chances created
8.5 (20th)
9.5 (t-17th)
Big chances
2.8 (3rd)
1.5 (t-19th)
Duels won
48.5 (21st)
48.8 (20th)
Tackles won
9.8 (t-13th)
8.0 (t-23rd)
10.8 (t-18th)
10.8 (t-18th)
17.8 (t-9th)
9.3 (27th)
Fouls committed
9.0 (27th)
13.3 (t-10th)
Fouls suffered
9.0 (26th)
15.0 (t-5th)