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Jun 29, 2024 11:09 pm

Ibrahim Aliyu scores early as Dynamo edge Charlotte FC 1-0

Charlotte FC, Dynamo

Ibrahim Aliyu’s fifth-minute goal held up as the deciding score in Houston Dynamo FC’s 1-0 win over visiting Charlotte FC on Saturday.

The victory extended Houston’s unbeaten streak to six matches (3-0-3). The Dynamo are also 2-0-3 in their last five home matches.

Charlotte FC’s own four-match (3-0-1) unbeaten run ended with Saturday’s defeat. It was only Charlotte’s second loss in its last 11 matches (6-2-3).

Steve Clark made four saves for his fourth shutout of the season. The Dynamo (8-6-6, 30 points) have allowed only 23 goals over 20 matches played this season.

In a meeting of two of the league’s top defensive clubs, Houston needed just five minutes to break down Charlotte’s back line. It was the first time this season that Charlotte FC (9-7-5, 32 points) allowed a goal within the first 30 minutes of a match.

Amine Bassi and Sebastian Ferreira each received assists for their roles in Aliyu’s fifth goal of the season. Bassi’s cross found Ferreira in the middle of the box, and Ferreira’s canny pass found Aliyu right in front of the net for the finish.

The Dynamo held 69.9 percent of the possession in the first half, and this control led to several other decent scoring chances. Ferreira launched a shot just barely wide of the post in the 33rd minute, and two minutes later, the striker just barely missed a final touch on an Aliyu cross in front.

After Houston dominated the first 45 minutes, Charlotte FC kept things much more even during the second half. Charlotte had its closest scoring chance in the 75th minute, as Iuri Tavares’ canny back-heel pass set up Liel Abada for a dangerous shot blocked by Clark.

Sebastian Kowalczyk almost scored an insurance goal for the Dynamo one minute into second-half stoppage time, but goalkeeper Kristijan Kahlina made a huge stop to keep Charlotte’s chances alive.

Charlotte FC captain Ashley Westwood was unavailable due to a caution accumulation suspension. Westwood had played every minute of Charlotte’s previous 20 matches.

–Field Level Media

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