Houston Dynamo

Your Friday Kickoff: Can Atlanta beat Cincy in Miles Robinson's homecoming? | MLSSoccer.com


Houston Dynamo sign Olsen to contract extension

Houston Dynamo FC have signed head coach Ben Olsen to a contract extension through the 2026 MLS season. Now in his second season at the club, Olsen is coming off a transformative debut campaign in which the Dynamo won the 2023 US Open Cup title – earning a berth in this year's Concacaf Champions Cup in the process – and returned to the Audi MLS Cup Playoffs for the first time since 2017.

All MLS games are worth watching. Some are worth watching more. The Watchgridometer is here to help you plan your matchday by giving each game a potential watchability score. A 50/50 game has “best game of all time” potential. Games are ranked in order compared to their time slot.

Atlanta United vs. FC Cincinnati
WATCH: Apple TV - MLS Season Pass | Saturday, 7:30 pm ET
Watchability Score: 43/50

This week’s highest-rated game is a matchup between two of the best in the East. It’s a homecoming game for now-Cincy center back Miles Robinson. He’ll have his hands full with an Atlanta front four that should be close to full strength. Meanwhile, his teammates will have to figure out how to kickstart their lackluster (so far) attack against an Atlanta side that’s shown significant defensive improvement from last season.

LAFC vs. New York Red Bulls
WATCH: Apple TV - MLS Season Pass | Saturday, 10:30 pm ET
Watchability Score: 42/50

Both teams have excellent underlying numbers. Only the Red Bulls have the points to reflect that right now. Still, traveling across the country to face one of the best teams in the league is always difficult. If New York pull out a win here, they might just nestle themselves firmly into the “contender” category for a while. If LAFC find a way to win, they might just be able to convince some folks that they’re turning the corner. They have to quit underperforming their numbers at some point, right?

Whoever wins, it will be curious to see how they make it happen. The Red Bulls are using the ball a little more these days, but neither team loves possession. It could be a matter of who survives the most car crashes and is lucky enough to have the ball bounce their way.

Columbus Crew vs. Portland Timbers
WATCH: Apple TV - MLS Season Pass | Saturday, 7:30 pm ET
Watchability Score: 38/50

The Crew are always something close to appointment television, but the potential for a pure, uncut, chaos-ball game is off the charts with Portland in town. The Timbers have allowed 11 goals over their last four games.

CF Montréal vs. Orlando City
WATCH: Apple TV - MLS Season Pass, TSN 5, RDS | Saturday, 7:30 pm ET
Watchability Score: 37/50

Another week, another big test at home for Montréal.

Orlando have started to bounce back after their CCC exit and have earned seven points over their last three games, including last week’s comeback win over D.C. United. Like last year, they’re struggling to get things going to start the season. But they’re also finding ways to get results. A Montréal win here would be (another) big deal for one of the most intriguing teams of the season.

Inter Miami CF vs. Nashville SC
WATCH: Apple TV - MLS Season Pass | Saturday, 7:30 pm ET
Watchability Score: 35/50

Not even Lionel Messi and Luis Suárez can drag a Nashville game to the top of the grid. Nashville have seven points in seven games and can’t even play defense anymore. It’s Sufferball without the payoff.

Sporting KC vs. St. Louis CITY SC
WATCH: Apple TV - MLS Season Pass | Saturday, 8:30 pm ET
Watchability Score: 33/50

Don’t pretend otherwise, this one is already a rivalry. It’s the first time we’ve seen these two since SKC bulldozed first-seeded St. Louis out of Round One of the playoffs. Things will get testy. On top of the bad blood, these teams are already jostling for position in the crowded West.

Charlotte FC vs. Minnesota United FC
WATCH: Apple TV - Free, FS1, FOX Deportes; TSN 3 | Sunday, 6 pm ET
Watchability Score: 31/50

Minnesota could take a lesson from Charlotte. The Crown, for all their flaws, don’t go down easy at home. The Loons are going to have a tough time in this one. Keep an eye in particular on Charlotte’s new DP Liel Abada. Abada scored for the first time last weekend in Charlotte’s 3-2 home win over Toronto.

Seattle Sounders FC vs. Vancouver Whitecaps FC
WATCH: Apple TV - MLS Season Pass, TSN 5, RDS | Saturday, 10:30 pm ET
Watchability Score: 30/50

This could have been a big one, but Seattle didn’t hold up their end of the bargain. They’re at home, though, and the ‘Caps have struggled against the best teams they’ve played so far. Maybe Seattle can prove they’re better than they seem?

Houston Dynamo FC vs. Austin FC
WATCH: Apple TV - MLS Season Pass | Saturday, 8:30 pm ET
Watchability Score: 28/50

Another rivalry game. It doesn’t quite have the same juice, though. Austin have been surviving more than thriving. Houston can go ahead and lock up their spot as the best team in Texas if they take care of business here. And they probably should. The Dynamo have won four of their last five.

New York City FC vs. D.C. United
WATCH: Apple TV - MLS Season Pass | Saturday, 7:30 pm ET
Watchability Score: 27/50

It’s game three of a critical five-game homestand for New York City FC. They should be fine as long as they use the same strategy everyone else has begun to use against D.C. United. Just let D.C. take the lead, and they’ll let you back into the game eventually.

LA Galaxy vs. San Jose Earthquakes
WATCH: Apple TV - Free, FS1, FOX Deportes; TSN 3 | Sunday, 8:15 pm ET
Watchability Score: 26/50

It’s techincally a Cali Clásico. But man. The Quakes are in danger here if they keep playing this way defensively.

Chicago Fire FC vs. Real Salt Lake
WATCH: Apple TV - MLS Season Pass | Saturday, 8:30 pm ET
Watchability Score: 24/50

Chicago have just one loss in their last five games. But we’ve seen this movie before. There’s no reason to get excited. Not yet.

Now if they beat a good RSL team……….

Ok, yeah, you’re still going to want to give that a few months.

Colorado Rapids vs. FC Dallas
WATCH: Apple TV - MLS Season Pass | Saturday, 9:30 pm ET
Watchability Score: 24/50

The Rapids are one of the most interesting teams in the league! Dallas are… kind of a total bummer. This is an opportunity for the Rapids to earn their fourth win in seven games.

Toronto FC vs. New England Revolution
WATCH: Apple TV - MLS Season Pass | Saturday, 7:30 pm ET
Watchability Score: 20/50

Toronto have lost three in a row. New England have lost five times in their first seven games.

Good luck out there. Stick with what’s working.

@J_SamJones

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