Another match, another painful result. Welcome to this week’s forecast nonetheless!
I don’t want to relive the specifics of last week’s game, so hopefully it is enough to know that your Portland Timbers got absolutely overwhelmed by the worst team in the league. With perhaps their best chance to take three points during this road trip, the Timbers didn’t merely stumble, they fell flat on their faces in a 3-0 loss to the San Jose Earthquakes. Yep, the team that up until they played the Timbers hadn’t managed a single point all season. Ouch.
And for me, it’s another week with no standings update. So you all get to be in the dark with where you are and where you’re going as much as the Timbers do! With even a little bit of luck, I’ll have calculated all points by the next edition of this thread. Though if MindfulCyclist’s comment on last week’s thread (“Second, don’t feel rushed to get the point totals out soon. I don’t think any of us want to know!”) is anything to go by, maybe I shouldn’t do any calculations?
This weekend’s match takes PTFC to Texas, where they’ll face an FC Dallas side in a little bit of transition. After Oscar Pareja left for Liga MX last year, Dallas has a new coach for the first time since 2014. Despite having a new coach, they’ve been decent out of the gate, taking 10 points from six games. And in three home matches they have yet to lose. The Timbers, obviously, are a shambles. The lineup is changing week to week, no one is stepping up to carry the team, and it’s near impossible to guess even which boys in green we’ll see on the lineup sheet. Regardless of who’s been on the field, PTFC’s defense has been a sieve. With 15 goals allowed through five games, they are a paragon of futility. At some point, we hope, they’ll right the ship. Is this the week they do it? Do they stop the bleeding and manage at least a half step in the right direction?
Total Cards O/U: 5.5
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
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 few 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 Blanco scores, assisted by Valeri, and you predicted that exact combination, you get a total of three points: 1 goal, 1 assist, 1 bonus.)
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. Just like predicting a player assist, you earn an assist point if you correctly predict an unassisted or free kick goal. 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.
If you’re looking for where I set the over/under on total cards, check the end of the preview paragraph after the standings.
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:
Valeri (Free kick)
Graham Zusi (Free kick)
Krisztian Nemeth (Johnny Russel)
Next, choose your first yellow card, and that means picking only one person:
First yellow to Matt Besler
Then reds, if any. (NOTE: No points awarded for correctly calling a red-card-free match, so take a guess.):
Roger Espinoza 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!