Portland Timbers vs. LA Galaxy | 2020 MLS Match Preview

POR-LA Week 21

2020 MLS Regular Season – Week 21
Portland Timbers vs. LAFC
Providence Park – Portland
October 28– 10:00 PM ET

TV: ESPN, ESPN Deportes in US; TSN 1/4 in Canada


The Portland Timbers have their sights set on first place in the Western Conference,, and clinching a berth in the 2020 Audi MLS Cup Playoffs, when they take on the last-place LA Galaxy Wednesday night at Providence Park.

The Timbers (9W-5L-5D) are coming off a 1-1 draw against the Seattle Sounders and are one point behind first-place Sporting Kansas City, while the Galaxy (5W-9L-3D) suffered a 2-0 defeat to rival LAFC at Banc of California Stadium Sunday. 

This is the third meeting this season with the Timbers bouncing back from a 3-2 home defeat on Sept. 2 to beat the Galaxy 6-3 in Carson a month later with Jeremy Ebobisse and Felipe Mora both scoring a brace. 

Portland Timbers

Gio Savarese called it a "perfect game" until the Timbers conceded a stoppage-time equalizer for a second consecutive match to settle for a 1-1 draw against the Sounders at CenturyLink Field Thursday. He said the disappointment of a draw in Seattle is a positive sign. 

“We are here in Seattle, playing against our rivals, playing against a very good team and we tied in this match and we’re very disappointed because we felt that we could have gotten more, right there that’s a good sign,” Savarese said after the match. “It shows that we came here for something important, to get three points. The fact that we finish the game disappointed because of what happened in the end shows that we were convinced the work we put in was going to give us the three points.”

Portland Timbers vs. LA Galaxy | 2020 MLS Match Preview - Project Starting XI
  • Updated team roster
  • Injury Report:
    • OUT: Dairon Asprilla (M) - left knee injury
    • OUT: Sebastian Blanco (M) - right ACL injury
    • OUT: Julio Cascante (D) - left ankle injury
    • QUESTIONABLE: Blake Bodily (M) - right thigh injury
    • QUESTIONABLE: Jeremy Ebobisse (F) - concussion
    • QUESTIONABLE: Marvin Loría (M) - abdomen injury
  • Suspended: None
  • Suspended after next caution: Diego Chara (M), Eryk Williamson (M)
  • International duty:  None

LA Galaxy

It's now seven losses in their last eight matches for the Galaxy, who suffered a 2-0 El Trafico defeat. The Galaxy were reduced to 10 men in the 22nd minute when center back Giancarlo Gonzalez was given a straight red card by referee Kevin Stott for denial of an obvious goal-scoring opportunity. Danny Musovski scored a debated opening goal early in the second half and Carlos Vela tacked on a stoppage-time insurance goal. 

"The big mistake was VAR on the first goal for LAFC," Galaxy head coach Guillermo Barros Schelotto said after the match. "I was surprised when I saw the play, the ball is very clearly out. Even the player for LAFC checked with the linesman, what he is doing, because he realized the ball was out and it was a corner. I think more important thing that changed the game, was the mistake by the VAR, not the red. Because the ref can sometimes make a mistake, but the VAR has to figure out that the ref was wrong. It was very clear the ball was out. I don’t know why the VAR didn’t say that, because the ball is out."

After a long process for the LA Galaxy to land the Argentine star on loan last year, they may be in for another round of negotiations to keep him. The player reportedly has a $20 million purchase option as part of his loan deal, but TyC Sports reports that the Galaxy have told Boca they won't pay the $20 million figure and want to negotiate a new price.

Portland Timbers vs. LA Galaxy | 2020 MLS Match Preview - Project Starting XI
  • Updated team roster
  • Injury Report:
    • QUESTIONABLE: Danilo Acosta (M) - ACL injury
    • QUESTIONABLE: Javier Hernandez (M) - hamstring injury
  • Suspended: Giancarlo Gonzalez (D)
  • Suspended after next caution: Nick DePuy (D)
  • International duty:  None

Series Matchup at Timbers

  • Timbers: 5 wins, 23 goals
  • LAFC: 3 wins, 16 goals
  • 3 draws


  • Referee: Drew Fischer
  • Assistant Referees: Kathryn Nesbitt, Mike Rottersman
  • 4th Official: Marcos de Oliveira
  • VAR: Allen Chapman