The Seattle Sounders are visiting the Houston Dynamo on Wednesday (5:38 p.m. PT; FOX 13+, Prime Video, 93.3 KJR FM, El Rey 1360 AM) in their first match of the season. Here are three matchups to watch:
Will Bruin vs. Teenage Hadebe
There are likely going to be some rotations for a midweek away match, the second of three in eight days for the Sounders. Head Coach Brian Schmetzer may very well go with Bruin, the former Dynamo forward who has scored plenty of goals in his former stadium. The big veteran will be matched up against Zimbabwe international center back Hadebe, who the Dynamo acquired as a Designated Player from the Turkish first division last summer. He and the Houston defense have allowed just north of a goal per game through 11 matches.
Albert Rusnák vs. Coco Carrasquilla
There will be no João Paulo (injury) or Obed Vargas (suspension) in the midfield for the Sounders on Wednesday, so even more of the onus for control in the center of the park will fall to Rusnák. Seattle’s offseason Designated Player acquisition will need to continue to play connector between the back line and the attack with perhaps even more of an impetus to get forward. He’ll be up against Carrasquilla, a 23-year-old Panamanian international who joined Houston on loan last season before the Dynamo exercised his purchase option last week to make his move permanent. He was an MLS Team of the Week bench player this past week after scoring Houston’s opener in a 2-0 win over Nashville SC.
Xavier Arreaga vs. Sebastián Ferreira
It will be a battle of South American internationals as the Ecuadorian Arreaga goes head-to-head with the Paraguayan Ferreira. The Dynamo acquired the 24-year-old forward as a Designated Player this past offseason, and he’s been productive with four goals and an assist in 772 minutes. The Sounders are in search of their first clean sheet of the MLS season, and it will start with how well Arreaga & Co. can keep Ferreira quiet and devoid of chances.