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Rose City Forecast 34: Vancouver Whitecaps vs Portland Timbers

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MLS: Vancouver Whitecaps FC at Portland Timbers Jaime Valdez-USA TODAY Sports

Welcome, welcome to the final Timbers prediction thread of 2018!

NOTE: Check the bonus points special formatting for this match at the end of the preview paragraph!

Last weekend, the Portland Timbers made it two in a row over Real Salt Lake to climb to 54 points. With a few wonderful saves from Steve Clark, PTFC managed to keep the clean sheet, and the offense continued to speed along, putting three goals past Nick Rimando. Sebastian Blanco had another game with both a goal and an assist, and Diego Chara got a goal, which is always fun. Larrys Mabiala got his fifth of the season from a Diego Valeri set piece - quite the accomplishment for a center back! All around, it was another solid performance from the Timbers to get the three goal win.

We have a shared prediction of the week as both landoid and UNOprivateer took 12 points for calling the 3-0 scoreline, plus a couple of points from goals and assists. landoid also gets the bonus points for predicting that VAR equipment would begin smoking and catch fire by the 70th minute. At least that would’ve explained the missed calls in the previous game!

And here we have the penultimate standings. MofoOG has a little bit of space at the top, though there are four more of you who could catch up with an excellent prediction. Good luck to all in the final week!

Standings Match 33

Participant Total Points RSL
Participant Total Points RSL
MofoOG 155 7
Timbers Pride 150 8
STYLES34 147 6
UNOprivateer 147 12
MindfulCyclist 145 2
lefthanded49 111 2
MacVanek 111 5
landoid 108 14
jocked07 104 10
BarmyTarmy 100 9
MrMoody 92 6
Richard Hamje 85 0
shrekpdx 85 0
straight red 77 0
GeorgeCorps17 70 0
LampzTheLegend 68 0
aljames 59 0
RCTID26 58 0
4-5-2 54 0
hoser!hoser! 54 0
CubanDaywalker 36 0
oregonvania 28 0
jackwiddy 27 0
OwenGail 25 0

Sunday is Decision Day with 22 teams playing in 11 games all at the same time. In what’s becoming tradition, the Timbers are up against the Vancouver Whitecaps, who, this year, are already eliminated from the playoffs. Meanwhile, PTFC has the chance to move up the standings and earn a home knockout game if they get the win and at least one other result falls their way. But if the team goes hard for the win, it could mean tired legs in said playoff match. And if that decision wasn’t enough, Portland is also facing a Vancouver side that’s in quite a bit of transition. They are without a permanent coach, and captain Kendall Waston has said he wants out. So it’s a bit of an understatement to say things are up in the air. How will things land? Will the Timbers get the win? Will the win be enough to elevate their seeding? Will they be stuck on the road regardless? What do you think?

Special Bonus Points! Because of the drama of Decision Day, the bonus points are actually going to be a little different this week: one bonus point if you correctly predict the Timbers’ final spot in the standings, and the second if you correctly predict their playoff opponent! Good luck!

Total Cards O/U: 4.5

The Scoring Format:

  • Correct score: 5 points
  • Correct result (draw/win/loss): 3 points
  • Each clean sheet: 2 points
  • Each goal-scorer: 1 point
  • Each FK/PK/assist/lack of assist: 1 point
  • Goal/assist bonus: 1 point
  • Player with the first yellow card of the match: 1 point
  • Each player with a red card: 1 point (Cannot earn points for predicting 0 red cards, but you may predict up to 3 players with a red.)
  • Over/under on total cards: 1 point
  • Most outrageous(ly accurate) prediction: 2 points

Some ground rules and explanations/clarifications (the fine print):

You may amend your prediction at any point up to kickoff to account for game day 18 announcements. I recommend at least getting an initial prediction sooner, just in case you forget to come back in that hour or two before the game.

Keep your scoreline predictions realistic. Basically, if you’re predicting lots of goals all the time to just earn points on goals and assists and ignoring the score, I feel that goes against the spirit of this thread. This hasn’t been at all a problem in the last two years, so let’s keep it that way!

The goal/assist bonus is an additional point if you correctly get the correct scorer and assistant on the same goal. (For example, if Nagbe scores, assisted by Valeri, and you predicted that exact combination, you get a total of three points: 1 goal, 1 assist, 1 bonus. However, if you predicted Nagbe scores, assisted by Adi, and Adi scores, assisted by Valeri, you would get two points from the Nagbe/Valeri prediction: 1 goal, 1 assist.)

Please be clear whether you think a goal will be unassisted, assisted, or from a PK/FK: Unassisted = no assist, run of play; Assisted = player who got the assist; PK/FK = directly from a free kick. For the purposes of this thread, a PK counts as an FK, and an FK as a PK. If you just leave the assist section blank, I will assume you’re declining to make an assist prediction.

Even though a player can be awarded a secondary assist by OPTA, I will award a maximum of one assist point per goal. But that point can come from either the primary or secondary assist in the box score. However, please keep your predictions to one assist per goal.

For the over/under on cards, a second yellow leading to a red counts as two cards, not three.

You may predict more than one red card if you’re expecting a chippy match, but only up to three total.

For the most outrageous(ly accurate) prediction, I will be trying to toe a line between completely absurd and mundane in my choices. As I see it, the goal here is to add even more fun without going too over-the-top ridiculous. So, in my mind, the best predictions will be something that could conceivably happen, but don’t happen often, like amusing coaching spats or goals that bounce off the crossbar, then off the keeper’s back, and then in. Things like that.

If you’re looking for where I set the over/under on total cards, check the end of the preview paragraph after the standings.

Format:

In the comment title, post your predicted score with the winners; for example, 4-2 Timbers

In the body of your comment, start with the goals and assists, like so:

Nagbe (Valeri)

Valeri (Free kick)

Adi (PK)

Blanco (Unassisted)

Beckham (Free kick)

Donovan (Beckham)

Next, choose your first yellow card, and that means picking only one person:

First yellow to Nigel De Jong

Then reds, if any. (NOTE: No points awarded for correctly calling a red-card-free match, so take a guess.):

Nigel De Jong gets a red card for stomping Blanco.

Clearly note whether you’re predicting over or under on total cards. Don’t leave me to try and figure it out!

And lastly, make your fun prediction:

Nigel de Jong tries to stomp Nagbe’s ankle again, but this time, Nagbe avoids the tackle. Being angry, Nagbe, for the first time in three years, kicks the ball straight into NDJ’s groin. Camera pans to a trademark Chara smile.