Major League Soccer

FC Cincinnati-Dynamo Preview

Two straight wins have lifted FC Cincinnati clear of the bottom of the Eastern Conference, but Jaap Stam knows his side must "start from scratch" as they prepare to face Houston Dynamo.

Cincinnati beat Chicago Fire before defeating Toronto FC, and will travel to Texas in a buoyant mood.

However, Stam urged his team to put the wins behind them and head into the Houston clash with a blank slate.

"The spirits are good. You can imagine if you win two games in a row, especially away from home as well, everybody's got a good feeling, there's a lot more laughter going around in the locker room," he said.

"Even before that, the players wanted to get these results, were willing to work hard for the results and now they've got it and of course now you want to continue doing that.

"The results of the games, you can't think about them too much anymore. It's good, it's very positive in what we've been doing but Houston is the next game, we start from scratch again, we need to get a result over there."

Houston, meanwhile, have a new chief executive, with Jamey Rootes having joined from the Houston Texans.

"It's been drinking from a firehose," said Rootes of his first week in the job. "Especially starting from a standstill when you have an organisation that is flying the way that this one does.

"I'm honoured to join this club at such an exciting and important time in this organisation's history."

Houston Dynamo – Maximiliano Urruti

Maximiliano Urruti has scored five goals in his last seven games, including the equalising goal against Real Salt Lake on Saturday.

FC Cincinnati – Luciano Acosta

Luciano Acosta netted the second goal in Cincinnati's 2-0 win over Toronto, capping a fine performance in which he created two chances – a team high – and had a joint team-high three attempts, with two hitting the target.

Dynamo's Urruti already has more goals this season (six) than in either of his previous two MLS campaigns in Montreal (five in 2020, four in 2019).

Allan Cruz scored the opening goal just four minutes into Cincinnati's 2-0 win over Toronto on Saturday. Cruz has now scored the five fastest goals in FC Cincinnati history, all in the opening seven minutes of matches.

Cincinnati extended its away winning streak to three with a 2-0 win over Toronto on Saturday. Cincinnati had won just four of its first 31 road games in MLS (D4 L23) before winning the last three in a row.

Houston's 1-1 draw at Real Salt Lake on Saturday made it 11 straight games with a goal to start the season for the Dynamo. It's the longest the Dynamo have ever gone into a season without being shut out as only five teams have had longer such runs to start a season in the last decade.

Cincinnati defeated Houston, 3-2, in their lone previous meeting in June 2019 in Cincinnati, the most recent of Cincinnati's two wins against Western Conference opposition. Since that match, FCC is winless in seven against Western foes (D1 L6).

Updated July 2, 2021

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