Houston, OCSC meet after thrilling openers

Houston, TX (SportsNetwork.com) - A pair of clubs coming off of thrilling results to open the season will return to action at BBVA Compass Stadium on Friday as the Houston Dynamo will play host to Orlando City SC.

Orlando marked its first MLS contest with a point, but the club looked likely to come away from its clash with fellow expansion side New York City FC empty- handed after Mix Diskerud handed the visitors the lead at the Citrus Bowl.

Kaka, however, put his stamp on his MLS debut by converting a last-minute free kick that took a massive deflection on its way past Josh Saunders, salvaging a point for Orlando in a 1-1 draw.

"I am absolutely delighted with the final score because it would have been a travesty if we hadn't taken something out of the game," OCSC head coach Adrian Heath said. "It was too good a day to end like that. It was the least the players deserved. ... But I am just so proud of everybody connected with the club for the way we fought back and got a point."

It was a rather peculiar debut outing for Orlando as the club received three cautions for simulation.

"Making decisions is hard within a split second but then having to think 'Did he try to dive? Did he not?' We're in danger of over-complicating things. I'd hope we can have some common sense on some of these decisions," said Heath. "I know the league is keen to eradicate this sort of thing but I'd also hope we don't get players immediately signaling for cards when a player goes down as that doesn't help the referee either."

Orlando will also be without star defender Aurelien Collin, who picked up a straight red card for a rash challenge against NYCFC.

Houston, specifically Giles Barnes, will hope to take advantage of that absence.

Barnes capped a memorable opening fixture last time out by striking in the 66th minute to give the Dynamo a 1-0 victory over Columbus Crew SC.

It was the fourth consecutive season in which Houston opened the campaign with a shutout victory, and with a win already under his belt, MLS newcomer Owen Coyle will be eager to build upon the result.

"I don't think we could have asked for any more than what we got," the new Dynamo boss said after the match. "I think there was really a lot of quality on the ball at times, I still think there's room for improvement in that area. But there's no doubt we scored a wonderful goal, a goal fit to any game.

"The lads defended really well against a really good side - a side that in the second half of last season was probably as good as anybody in the league, made the playoffs. And they play very exciting. I thought the game was end-to-end, I think anyone that watched the game as a neutral watched a lovely game."