Through the first three games of the season, the Portland Timbers were bad; bad enough to set a record for goals allowed through the first three games of a Major League Soccer season.
Then, after a bye in week four and an improved but still losing performance in week five, the Timbers’ troubles were put in perspective by the San Jose Earthquakes: after losing their first four matches, the Earthquakes had managed an astounding -12 goal differential despite the arrival of famously defensive minded coach Matias Almeyda.
Now the two sides are set to face off in a battle of the basement-dwellers of the Western Conference, and whoever triumphs will be primed to take the sort of step forward that both are desperately in need of. While the Timbers seem to be on an upward trajectory after their narrow loss to Zlatan Ibrahimovic and the LA Galaxy, the Quakes truly have their backs against the wall and have everything to prove at home in front of their fans.
With points, pride, and the possibility of being taken seriously in the season-long fight for a playoff spot in the West, both sides will be looking to take their chances today.
Storylines: “Things are so bad in San Jose right now, that they’ve already held a closed-door players-only meeting to try and sort through everything.”
Timbers wary of winless Earthquakes: “That’s why San Jose make the big splash to bring in the 44-year-old Almeyda who became the fifth person to try to turn the club’s fortunes around in the last three years. While he has a history of straightening out wayward franchises, the San Jose squad Almeyda inherits may his toughest walnut to crack yet.”
And stop by the Rose City Forecast for your weekly match predictions.
Watch it on: ROOT Sports
Where: Avaya Stadium in San Jose, CA
When: Saturday, April 6th at 5:00 p.m. PT
Portland Timbers: 0-3-1, 11th place in the Western Conference, lost 2-1 at Los Angeles Galaxy
San Jose Earthquakes: 0-4-0, 12th place in the Western Conference, lost 5-0 to Los Angeles FC