ExLink - 08/26/18 - PORvSEA

Portland Timbers vs. Seattle Sounders FC | 2018 MLS Match Preview

Portland Timbers vs. Seattle Sounders FC
2018 MLS Regular Season — Week 26

Providence Park — Portland
August 26 - 9:30 pm ET


Heineken Rivalry Week concludes with a tasty Cascadia Cup clash between the Portland Timbers and Seattle Sounders FC Sunday at Providence Park.

The Timbers enter this year’s third encounter with the Sounders having lost three straight games, while Seattle have won six straight and are unbeaten in nine.

Portland won both of the first two meetings this season, a late Sebastian Blanco goal providing the difference in a 1-0 victory at Providence Park in May and Larrys Mabiala struck for a brace in a 3-2 triumph at CenturyLink Field a month later.

The Timbers are undefeated in their last four MLS matches against Seattle (2W-2D), their longest stretch in regular season play without a loss to their Cascadia rivals, per Opta.

Portland Timbers

After 15 consecutive games without a loss, Portland (10-6-7) has now dropped three in a row following a 3-0 defeat at Sporting Kansas City Saturday.

Diego Rubio struck for a first-half brace and Johnny Russell tacked on a late insurance goal for surging Sporting, while the Timbers have been outscored 9-2 in their last three games.

“Now we’re heading to play this match which is against our rival which I think it comes at a perfect time,” Giovanni Savarese said. “It comes I think at a moment which we need this game for us to play.”

  • Suspended: None
  • Suspended after next caution: None
  • International duty: None
  • Injury Report: OUT: D - Modou Jadama (left thigh injury), D - Roy Miller (right thigh injury), GK - Jake Gleeson (bilateral tibial stress fracture surgery); QUESTIONABLE: D - Liam Ridgewell (lower left leg injury)

Projected Starting XI
(3-5-2, right to left)
GK: Jeff Attinella — Larrys Mabiala, Lawrence Olum, Julio Cascante — Alvas Powell, Diego Chara, David Guzman, Andy Polo, Zarek Valentin — Diego Valeri, Samuel Armenteros

  • Notes: During Portland’s winless streak, Diego Valeri has created 0.8 chances from open play. During the 15-game undefeated run that preceded their current skid Valeri was creating 1.9 chances from open play per game. … Portland have dropped three straight games, getting outscored 9-2 in the process. The last time they lost four straight MLS matches was in 2012 as a part of a franchise-worst five-game losing streak.

Seattle Sounders FC

Seattle (10-9-5) rolled over a depleted LA Galaxy side, winning 5-0 at CenturyLink Field for their most lopsided victory over their Western Conference rival. The victory pulled them to within two points of the playoff line in the West. The last spot is currently occupied by the Timbers

The Sounders raced out to 2-0 lead on goals by Chad Marshall and Harry Shipp inside the opening 20 minutes. Following a Servando Carrasco own goal, Cristian Roldan and Raul Ruidiaz tacked on second-half goals to complete the rout.

“I have a lot of confidence this team can do a lot of damage. They’ve shown that they’ve come together,” Brian Schmetzer said. “I think from Day One I’ve always said the spirit of this group, them not giving up, them fighting through adversity has always been there. Now that we’ve got everybody back, now that we’re collecting points that becomes a dangerous team to face, a team that’s confident, a team that’s extremely talented. Hopefully we can keep this going, hopefully we don’t get overconfident and see if we can’t string together more points and end up as high as we can in the standings and we’ll go from there.”

  • Suspended: None
  • Suspended after next caution: D - Nouhou Tolo, D - Jordy Delem
  • International duty: None
  • Injury Report: OUT: F - Jordan Morris (torn ACL); QUESTIONABLE: M - Handwalla Bwana (right midfoot sprain), F - Clint Dempsey (lower back pain), D - Brad Smith (left adductor tightness)

Projected Starting XI
(4-2-3-1, right to left)
GK: Stefan Frei — Kelvin Leerdam, Kim Kee-hee, Chad Marshall, Nouhou Tolo — Gustav Svensson, Osvaldo Alonso — Cristian Roldan, Nico Lodeiro, Harry Shipp — Raul Ruidiaz

  • Notes: With the opening goal in Seattle’s win over the LA Galaxy, Marshall moved into a tie with Drew Moor as the top scoring defender in MLS since 2010 with 26. … With their 5-0 win over the Galaxy last weekend, Seattle set a franchise MLS record with their sixth consecutive victory. Additionally, they are unbeaten in their last nine MLS games, outscoring opponents 18-5.

All-Time Series

  • Overall: Portland Timbers 7 wins, 34 goals … Seattle Sounders FC 9 wins, 37 goals … 6 draws
  • At Portland: Timbers 6 wins, 26 goals … Sounders 2 wins, 19 goals … 3 draws
  • Last meeting at Portland: Portland Timbers 1, Seattle Sounders FC 0 (May 13, 2018)


Referee: Christopher Penso
Assistant Referees: Jason White, Corey Rockwell
4th Official: Joseph Dickerson
VAR: Younes Marrakchi