This may well be the first controversy facing the Timbers as an MLS side.
As pointed out in the broadcast yesterday it's not the hugest of problems to face Spencer as a first time coach of a first year squad, but a decision will need to be made as Troy Perkins comes back from injury.
I know it's early and the easy thing to do is to give the starting role back to the veteran player. But, Jake Gleeson has shown some real skill in the goal keepers box. The first goal scored on him last week was near unstoppable, a picture prefect strike by Toronto, not much any keeper could have done with that ball. The following week, his first start, the only goal comes off of a failed clearance of a fixed set. If your defenders do not clear the ball after two attempts off a fixtures chances are your goalie is going to be left exposed.
On the flip side, Gleeson made the MLS save of the week in his first outing and likely has a contender for the same honor this week. That is no small accomplishment, particularly for such a young keeper.
From what little I have seen of Troy Perkins he's a solid experienced keeper. the question is, after a bad season last year, will he bring that chip on his shoulder attitude we can use out there. He has definitely said all of the right things to show he does, and he performed well in the preseason overall, but that was preseason.
Spencer is faced with an interesting choice for his home opener that is for certain, ride the young obviously talented guy who has shown fans what he can do in a Portland Timbers uniform (with a toward building him up as a long term keeper and leader of the squad), or does he turn the the grizzled experienced veteran with lots of MLS experience behind him. I am not certain what I would do.
The one thing I am certain of is a like what Jake Gleeson has shown so far.
So what do you think?
[Mod Update: Just some proof reading and small editing to make it front page worthy.]
If Perkins is indeed 100% by April 14th do you start:
Perkins - The Vet (53 votes)
Gleeson - The Youngster (86 votes)
139 total votes