Dynamo confident pre-season will help vs Atlante
Houston Dynamo head coach Dominic Kinnear is confident they will reap the benefits of a positive pre-season in the first leg of their CONCACAF Champions League quarter-final against Atlante tomorrow.
The Dynamo take on the Mexicans at the UH Robertson Stadium after two wins, two draws and a loss prior to the start of the Major League Soccer season, with Kinnear satisfied the club are in good shape.
"I think we are looking pretty good health-wise so far. Right now, all we want to do is play as many games as possible against good opponents to get us ready both mentally and physically," he said.
"The message isn't out there that we are playing a certain number of games. I think so far the guys are pretty level headed and they are not thinking too far ahead, and they are not too worried about what is behind them so they can always focus on the next thing in front of them.
"Right now that is Atlante on Tuesday night."
Atlante are hoping to improve on their poor form in the Mexican league after winning only one game out of seven to lie bottom of their group.
Coach Jose Guadalupe Cruz said: "It is a very tough, decisive month. We are betting all on the Champions League. We'll field our best team on the field despite the fact we are missing several important players."
Three Mexican teams play on Wednesday night, with Cruz Azul and Pumas meeting at the Estadio Azul.
Santos Laguna, meanwhile, visit Montreal Impact at the Olympic Stadium in Canada.
Cruz Azul and Pumas are experiencing contrasting fortunes so far in their league. The hosts are second in their group while Pumas lie at the bottom.
Pumas midfielder Jehu Chiapas said: "The important thing is remaining focused. With commitment and confidence, we'll achieve something.
"The results have not gone with us so far but we must be focused on winning."
Finally, on Thursday, the Puerto Rico Islanders welcome Marathon of Honduras.
The second legs of the quarter-final ties will be played next week.