Dynamo-Red Bulls Preview

The Associated Press

The New York Red Bulls are enjoying a 12-match unbeaten run at home in the regular season.

The lone loss in that span came in the postseason and surely still stings.

The Houston Dynamo inflicted that defeat in last year's playoffs and return to New York for the first time since that series Wednesday night.

New York (1-2-4) is 8-0-4 in its last 12 at home in the regular season, and 6-0-3 all-time at home against Houston in non-playoff games.

The Dynamo's lone victory at New York was a 2-1 win in extra time in the second leg of last year's MLS Cup first-round playoff series Nov. 6. Substitute Omar Cummings scored in the 104th minute as Houston (2-3-1) posted a 4-3 aggregate victory to eliminate the team with the best record in MLS.

Cummings also stunned New York with a tying goal in stoppage time of a 2-2 draw in Houston in the first leg of the series.

The veteran forward has yet to start this year and has scored once in four appearances. He owns seven goals and six assists in 12 career matches against the Red Bulls.

The postseason series was surprising since New York outscored Houston 9-1 in sweeping three regular-season meetings in 2013.

The Red Bulls won't have Tim Cahill, who returned as a substitute in last Wednesday's 2-1 win over Philadelphia after missing two games with a hamstring problem. Cahill has been ruled out and is targeting a return to the starting lineup Saturday against Columbus.

New York avoided the longest winless streak to start a season in club history last week.

Thierry Henry and Lloyd Sam had second-half goals. The game was scoreless until Henry got on the end off a feed by Roy Miller to put New York in front in the 57th minute.

"There's a reason why he is called the designated player, and there's a reason why he played with all those teams he's played on, the level," coach Mike Petke told the Red Bulls' official website. "Big players come up at big times. He took that goal very well and set it up, and set the tone for us, then, from that point on and we got the other one, as well. He's a big player and he got the big goal."

New York also won't have defender Ibrahim Sekagya, who was sent off against the Union.

Houston star Brad Davis has missed the last two games with a sprained right ankle. The midfielder's status is unclear.

The Dynamo will be without defender Kofi Sarkodie, who was sent off in Saturday's scoreless draw at Philadelphia that ended Houston's three-game losing streak.

"I think the guys held together well and dug deep the last little bit, and getting a point out of that was good," coach Dominic Kinnear told the league's official website. "It's a conference opponent; it's a tough game playing down a man for the last 15 minutes."

Houston has gone 229 minutes without a goal. New York has yet to keep a clean sheet.