How the Timbers bounce back from their first dropped points in a month remains to be seen, but today’s match in Houston should be a stiff test for this reconstituted Timbers side and one that can serve as a measure of their ability to stand up to the stronger teams in the Western Conference. The Dynamo are currently in fourth in the West, but are in second by points per game and have so far put up a 5-0-1 record at BBVA Compass Stadium, only dropping points at home in their season opener.
While those numbers are strong, the Dynamo are not exactly running rampant over their opposition (with one exception). Seven of Houston’s nine games have been decided by a goal or less, and the two others were a 4-1 win over the still winless Colorado Rapids and a 2-0 victory over Caleb Porter’s struggling Columbus Crew SC.
The Timbers, meanwhile, are coming off a close match of their own; one that seemed to be a game-changing moment away from turning in their favor for most of the match. Luckily for the Timbers, today could be the debut of a new game-changing player as new designated player Brian Fernandez is available to make his debut. Where and how much Fernandez will play in today’s match remains to be seen, but if the 24 year old Argentine can carry forward any part of the attacking prowess that made him such a threat in Mexico then the Timbers cannot get him on the field soon enough.
Storylines: “If everything I’ve read is correct, we could see the Portland Timbers debut of Brian Fernandez. I highly doubt he’ll be in the starting eleven, but he’ll be in the 18, and I suspect he’ll get a 30-minute or so run out. But I don’t think it’s that long before he is in the starting eleven on a regular basis.”
And be sure to stop by the Rose City Forecast to make your predictions about today’s match.
Watch it on: ROOT Sports
Where: BBVA Compass Stadium in Houston, TX
When: Wednesday, May 15th at 5:30 p.m. PT
Portland Timbers: 3-6-1, 10th place in the Western Conference, lost 2-1 at Vancouver Whitecaps
Houston Dynamo: 6-2-1, 4th place in the Western Conference, lost 1-0 at Seattle Sounders