Portland Timbers vs. Vancouver Whitecaps FC | 2017 MLS Match Preview

Cristian Techera, Sebastian Blanco - Vancouver Whitecaps FC, Portland Timbers - Decision Day

Portland Timbers vs. Vancouver Whitecaps FC
2017 MLS Regular Season
Providence Park – Portland, Ore.
Sunday, October 22 – 4 pm ET
MLS LIVE in US | TSN1 in Canada

The Decision Day presented by AT&T contest that may have the most on the line on Sunday may very well be the Portland Timbers hosting Vancouver Whitecaps FC. Sure, there's a three-way contest for the final spot in the Audi 2017 MLS Cup Playoffs happening elsewhere, but this game features intrigue on two fronts, plus a trophy on the line.

First, the teams are currently first and second in the Western Conference, with the Whitecaps on top by two points. That means they'll either clinch the No. 1 seed with a win or draw against Portland, or the Timbers will leapfrog Vancouver into first place with a victory. Given the path to potential home-field advantage through most or all of the playoffs on the line, the battle for the No. 1 seed will be fierce.

Add to that the Cascadia Cup. If Portland win, they'll jump to first place in the Cascadia Cup standings, ahead of the Seattle Sounders, and will claim their first regional cup prize since 2012. The Whitecaps, defending champs, are out of the running this year, but if they beat Portland or hold them to a draw, they'll play spoilers and the Sounders will regain the trophy.

Portland Timbers vs. Vancouver Whitecaps FC | 2017 MLS Match Preview - https://league-mp7static.mlsdigital.net/images/mls-live-640x395_0.png

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Portland Timbers

  • Suspended: None
  • Int’l Duty: None
  • Injury Report: OUT: D Gbenga Arokoyo (Achilles tear), D Chance Myers (ankle injury); QUESTIONABLE: F Fanendo Adi (hamstring injury)

Projected Starting XI
(4-2-3-1, left to right)

GK: Jeff Attinella — Vytas, Liam Ridgewell, Larrys Mabiala, Alvas Powell — David Guzman, Diego Chara — Darlington Nagbe, Diego Valeri, Sebastian Blanco — Darren Mattocks

Notes: The Timbers have won five consecutive home league games and 10 of their 16 overall home games this year (2L-4D). They have also kept consecutive clean sheets, but have not had three straight home clean sheets since a four-match streak from May 2nd to June 20th, 2015...Diego Valeri leads MLS in penalty goals (six) and is tied for the lead in headed goals with Cyle Larin (five).

Vancouver Whitecaps FC

  • Suspended: None
  • Int’l Duty: None
  • Injury Report: OUT: M Matias Laba (ACL tear), David Edgar (PCL and MCL tear)

Projected Starting XI 
(4-2-3-1, left to right):
GK: Stefan Marinovic — Jordan Harvey, Tim Parker, Kendall Waston, Jake Nerwinski — Aly Ghazal, Tony Tchani — Christian Bolaños, Yordy Reyna, Cristian Techera — Fredy Montero

Notes: Vancouver has lost three of their last five road league games (2W) and been held scoreless in all three of the losses...In 1,043 minutes with Yordy Reyna on the field this year, Vancouver averages 1.7 goals for and 1.1 goals conceded per 90 minutes. In 2,100 minutes without him on the field this year, Vancouver averages 1.2 goals scored and 1.5 goals conceded per 90 minutes played.

All-Time Series

  • Overall: Portland 9 wins (33 goals) … Vancouver 4 wins (25 goals) … Ties 6
  • At Portland: Portland 5 wins (19 goals) … Vancouver 1 wins (12 goals) … Ties 4


Referee: Allen Chapman
Assistant Referees: Joe Fletcher, Andrew Bigelow
Fourth Official: Baldomero Toledo
Video Assistant Referee (VAR): Kevin Stott