By The Numbers presented by KDOT: #HOUvSKC | Oct. 3, 2020

"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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Sporting Kansas City (6-5-2, 20 points) will begin an unprecedented run of nine MLS matches in 30 days on Saturday when the club travels to BBVA Stadium on Saturday for a showdown with the Houston Dynamo (3-4-7, 16 points). Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. CT with live coverage on FOX Sports Kansas City, FOX Sports Midwest, FOX Sports GO, ESPN 94.5 FM and La Grande 1340 AM.

Manager Peter Vermes' men enter the weekend on full rest, having seen their Sept. 27 fixture at the Colorado Rapids rearranged for Oct. 21. The schedule change will require Sporting to navigate a historically busy month of October, and the defining stretch will begin Saturday against an up-and-down Dynamo side that has won the last two meetings in the storied series.

As a pair of Western Conference playoff hopefuls prepare to renew their rivalry, we take a statistical look at the fixture in our newest edition of By The Numbers, presented by the Kansas Department of Transportation.

Head-to-Head

  • Sporting are 4-2-2 in their last eight regular season meetings against Houston dating back to October 2017, posting four shutouts during that stretch. However, the Dynamo have won each of the last two meetings with victories on Aug. 25 and Sept. 5.
  • Sporting and Houston have combined for 14 goals in three previous meetings this season.
  • Houston leads the all-time series in the regular season (12-9-13) and in all competitions (18-14-14).
  • Sporting has faced Houston 35 times in all competitions since 2011, more than any other opponent, and posted a 13-12-10 record during that stretch.
  • Sporting midfielder Gadi Kinda has scored in two of three meetings against Houston this season.
  • Houston forward Darwin Quintero has two goals and four assists in his previous two appearances against Sporting this season.
  • Houston forward Mauro Manotas has scored eight goals in 11 competitive appearances against Sporting.

Houston Dynamo

  • MLS record: 3-4-7, 16 points (9th in Western Conference)
  • MLS home record: 2-0-3 (8 GF, 4 GA)
  • Last five regular season matches: 0-2-3, 3 points (T-L-T-L-T)
  • Last Match: T 1-1 at Nashville SC on Saturday, Sept. 26
  • Two of Houston's three wins this season have come versus Sporting.
  • Houston has gone 0-2-3 since defeating Sporting by a 2-1 scoreline on Sept. 5.
  • Houston started the season 0-2-4, then won three straight before going on its current five-game winless spell.
  • Houston is unbeaten at home this season, posting a 2-0-3 record.
  • Forward Darwin Quintero is tied for second in MLS with seven assists and also has a team-leading five goals. He is one of two MLS players (Alejandro Pozuelo) with at least five goals and seven assists this season.
  • Midfielder Memo Rodriguez has started all 14 regular season matches for Houston this season, tallying three goals and three assists.
  • Goalkeeper Marko Maric ranks third in MLS with 45 saves, having played every minute for Houston this season.
  • Forward Alberth Elis recorded four goals and three assists in six appearances for the Dynamo before transferring to Portuguese side Boavista on Sept. 21.

Sporting Kansas City

  • MLS record: 6-5-2, 20 points (3rd in Western Conference)
  • MLS away record: 2-1-1 (7 GF, 5 GA)
  • Last five regular season matches: 1-3-1, 4 points (T-L-W-L-L)
  • Last Match: Lost 1-2 vs. Orlando City SC on Wednesday, Sept. 23
  • Beginning Saturday, Sporting is set to play nine MLS regular season matches in a 30-day period for the first time in club history.
  • Sporting are the only MLS team yet to be shut out this season. They have set a club record by scoring in their first 13 matches of the regular season.
  • Sporting began the season 5-1-0 but have taken just five points from their last seven matches (1-4-2 record).
  • Sporting rank second in MLS in shots per game (15.5) and also leads the league in fewest shots faced per game (8.9).
  • Forward Johnny Russell has four goals in his last three games and leads Sporting with six goals on the season.
  • Russell's three-game scoring streak is tied for the longest in MLS this season. He has become the fourth player in Sporting history to score four consecutive goals for the club.
  • Midfielder Gadi Kinda and forward Khiry Shelton are tied for second on the team with four goals apiece.
  • Sporting are 5-2-1 and average 2.25 goals per game when forward Alan Pulido starts. The team is 1-3-1 and averages 1.2 goals per game when he does not start.
  • Since MLS returned to home markets in mid-August, Gianluca Busio leads Sporting in successful passes (354), passing accuracy (89.2%) and tackles won (13).
  • Graham Zusi leads MLS defenders with 184 successful passes ending in the final third.

Milestones and Miscellany

  • Sporting manager Peter Vermes is one shy of his 150th regular season coaching win. He would become the fifth head coach in league history to reach the milestone behind Sigi Schmid (240), Bruce Arena (215), Dom Kinnear (169) and Bob Bradley (166).

Recent #HOUvSKC meetings (all competitions)

  • Regular season record vs. Houston: 9-12-13
  • All-competitions record vs. Houston: 14-18-14
Date Result H/A Competition Details
06/23/2018 W 3-2 Home MLS Mauro Manotas bags first-half brace, but hosts rally behind goals from Daniel Salloi, Diego Rubio and Khiry Shelton
07/18/2018 L 2-4 Away Open Cup Johnny Russell and Yohan Croizet score early and late, but Houston advances behind braces from Mauro Manotas and Romell Quioto
08/04/2018 W 1-0 Away MLS Gianluca Busio assists Diego Rubio's second-half winner
06/01/2019 T 1-1 Away MLS Yohan Croizet and Alberth Elis trade second-half goals in cagey stalemate
08/31/2019 W 1-0 Home MLS Johnny Russell nets early header on assist from Graham Smith
03/07/2020 W 4-0 Home MLS Alan Pulido, Roger Espinoza, Gadi Kinda and Khiry Shelton score in dominant Children's Mercy Park home opener
08/25/2020 L 2-5 Home MLS 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
09/05/2020 L 1-2 Away MLS Erik Hurtado gives Sporting a first-half lead, but Houston rallies in the second half behind Alberth Elis and Mauro Manotas strikes

Team Stats (2020 regular season)

(Per Opta; MLS rank in parenthesis)

Category (per game) Sporting Houston
Goals scored 1.85 (5th) 1.50 (11th)
Goals conceded 1.54 (t-16th) 1.71 (t-21st)
Shots 15.5 (2nd) 14.0 (8th)
Shots on goal 4.5 (15th) 5.2 (5th)
Shooting accuracy 43.9% (20th) 51.1% (9th)
Shot conversion rate 11.9% (12th) 10.7% (16th)
Shots faced 8.9 (1st) 14.6 (22nd)
Passing accuracy 82.2% (12th) 81.7% (13th)
Possession 51.7% (10th) 48.9% (14th)
Chances created 10.0 (8th) 10.5 (7th)
Duels won 51.1 (13th) 43.9 (25th)
Tackles won 10.3 (8th) 9.5 (14th)
Interceptions 10.3 (22nd) 11.9 (t-11th)
Clearances 12.1 (26th) 19.4 (6th)
Fouls committed 12.6 (12th) 11.9 (17th)
Fouls suffered 10.8 (19th) 10.9 (18th)
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