FC Dallas

FC Dallas head coach Nico Estevez looking forward to 'special' Texas derby

Chris Smith
Estevez has made a strong start as FC Dallas head coach.
Estevez has made a strong start as FC Dallas head coach. / Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

With just one defeat from seven MLS games and progression to the fourth round of the US Open Cup, things couldn't have started much better for new FC Dallas head coach Nico Estevez.

The 42-year-old Spaniard is getting the best from the club's most important players, such as homegrown DP Jesus Ferreira and star signing Alan Velasco, and has overseen the best defensive record in the Western Conference so far, allowing just four goals.

But on Saturday, Estevez will take on a completely different kind of test when they host the Houston Dynamo in his first competitive Texas derby as FC Dallas head coach.

"It’s always special. It is a different feeling, a different intensity," Estevez told reporters following FC Dallas' 2-1 US Open Cup win over FC Tulsa on Tuesday.

"The fans have an energy in the stands because they have been waiting for this all week. Because we had an Open Cup game, it has been quiet, but I can assure you that tomorrow everyone will be talking about the Derby. It is good that we have the whole group healthy and training, ready to go against Houston."

Dallas beat the Dynamo 2-1 in a pre-season friendly over the winter but in competitive play, are winless against their state rivals in the last three meetings. Houston won 3-2 September 2021, while the previous two encounters ended all square.

Estevez added: "It is a special game, and we will try to do everything to win the game and get the three points.”