The Portland Timbers travel to PPL Park in Philadelphia this evening to take on the Union. While the game isn't really what you would consider a "must win" for the Timbers, there's still a lot riding on a solid result. The obvious three points aside, a win against the Union today would show that the Timbers can go away from home and win against a team that's also doing well in the regular season. The Timbers have only won twice away from home this year and one of those games was against the bottom-dwelling D.C. United.
Here's all the information you need for today's game:
Watch it on: KPDX
Kick off: 4:30 pm at PPL Park in Philadelphia
Portland Timbers: 33 points in the Western Conference.
Philadelphia Union: 30 points in the Eastern Conference.
Portland Timbers: Ricketts, Jewsbury, Jean-Baptiste, Kah, Harrington, Chara, Nagbe, W. Johnson (c), Valeri, Piquionne, R. Johnson
Subs: Kocic, Danso, Miller, Zizzo, Alhassan, Zemanski, Valencia
Philadelphia Union: MacMath, Gaddis, Parke, Okugo, Williams, Carroll (c), Cruz, Farfan, Le Toux, McInerney, Casey
Subs: Konopka, Fabinho, Kassel, Fernandes, Kleberson, Hoppenot, Wheeler
There's good news and bad news with regards to today's MLS schedule. The good news is that the LA Galaxy and the Vancouver Whitecaps are playing each other. Such a game ensures that both can't make a run at the Timbers spot in the standing. One of the teams could potentially pass the Timbers, but not both. A draw would ensure that neither really gets the upper hand. The bad news is that Real Salt Lake is hosting Sporting Kansas City at Rio Tinto. Now SKC is a solid team this year, but I'm not sure they have what it takes to best RSL on their home turf. So don't be surprised to see Salt Lake tack on another three points to their total. FC Dallas, for their part, play the Impact in Montreal. It will be interesting to see which of these two formerly hot teams comes out on top.
Keep an eye on those other results today as they could have big implications for when the Timbers really begin the playoff push in September/October.