PORTLAND, Ore. (Friday, Dec. 10, 2021) – Major League Soccer today announced that the Grammy Award-winning rock band Portugal. The Man will perform the National Anthem at the 2021 MLS Cup between the Portland Timbers and New York City Football Club on Saturday, Dec. 11 at 12 p.m. PST. The game will be played before a sold-out crowd at Providence Park in Portland and televised on ABC, UniMás/TUDN, TSN, TVA Sports and in nearly 200 countries globally.
Over the past decade, the Portland-based Portugal The Man has established themselves as one of rock’s most prized possessions and a live phenomenon, with over 1,600 shows under their belts and a storied reputation as festival favorites.
"We couldn’t be more proud of the Timbers representing Portland in MLS Cup, and we’re completely honored to be asked to perform the National Anthem at the game,” said Zach Caruthers, bass player and a founding member of Portugal The Man. “This is a first for us and we’re gonna try really hard to not mess it up. "
Originally heralding from Alaska, the band – comprised of John Gourley, Zach Carothers, Kyle O’Quin, Eric Howk, Jason Sechrist and Zoe Manville – soared to new heights in 2017 with the release of their RIAA certified-gold album, Woodstock. The album was marked by the success of their single, “Feel It Still,” which earned the group accolades – including a GRAMMY award for “Best Pop Duo/Group Performance,” a 6x RIAA platinum-certified single certification, a record-setting 20-week residency at No. 1 on alternative radio, and an inescapable presence on the Top 40 airwaves.
Alongside their musical accomplishments lies the group’s long-standing passion for social justice. In 2020, they officially launched their PTM Foundation, focused on universal issues related to human rights, community health, and the environment, with an emphasis on causes directly impacting Indigenous Peoples.
“The Portland Timbers have one of the most unique fan experiences in sports, driven by a passionate supporters group that includes TIFOs, rituals, and singing for 90 minutes,” said David Bruce, SVP of Brand and Integrated Marketing for MLS. “We knew we’d need to do something appropriate for MLS Cup, and a national anthem performance from Portugal The Man will be so fitting for the occasion.”
For the Timbers, the game on Saturday will be the third time they have reached MLS Cup in seven years. They will be playing host for the first time in the club’s history, looking to win a second league title after defeating the Columbus Crew in 2015. NYCFC have reached MLS Cup for the first time in the club’s seven-year existence, winning an honor for the first time in claiming the Eastern Conference championship.
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