After a pair of home wins over Minnesota United and New York City FC, the Timbers come into today’s match sporting an identity that has taken the first seven matches of the season to coalesce. Giovanni Saravese’s side started the season as a mess, but have since returned to a new take on the counter-attacking style in which Diego Valeri and company have thrived for the last several years. Defensively, the side put in a strong shift against NYCFC — familiar foes for Saravese — but it remains to be seen if the Timbers’ back line can hold up away from home.
A win this weekend could put the Timbers up above the red line in the West for the first time this season, while a loss would see the side drop down into 11th place, trailing the Earthquakes on goal differential and remaining above only the Seattle Sounders in the standings. Moreover, with the Sounders coming to town next weekend for the opening match of the 2018 Cascadia Cup, the Timbers will be hoping to carry forward the momentum they built with their last two wins and keep their rivals trapped in the basement of the Western Conference.
Storylines: “As we know, the MLS mantra is win at home, nick a few points on the road, and qualify for the playoffs. So far, things aren’t looking up for the Earthquakes, though they just about have an identical record from last year at this time and they still made the playoffs. Though, having a 0.71 ppg average won’t get you into the playoffs.”
Stop by the Rose City Forecast to make your predictions for today’s match.
Watch it on: FOX12
When: Saturday, May 5th at 7:30 p.m. PT
Where: Avaya Stadium in San Jose, CA
Portland Timbers: 2-3-2, 10th place in the Western Conference, beat NYCFC 3-0 at home
San Jose Earthquakes: 1-4-2, 11th place in the Western Conference, lost 2-1 at Columbus Crew