It’s now officially official - the Portland Timbers will host Minnesota United FC on Sunday, November 21 at 2:30 p.m. (Pacific) in the opening round of the 2021 MLS Cup Playoffs. The game will be broadcast nationally on ESPN and will be part of the second day of back-to-back MLS playoff matches.
After a bizarre day-long delay by the league, the full MLS playoff calendar was finally released and Portland finally learned of the day they would kick off the 2021 postseason. It comes just one week after Providence Park will also host the Portland Thorns in their playoff opener when they will face off against the Chicago Red Stars in the semifinal round of the 2021 NWSL playoffs.
The winner of the Portland vs. Minnesota matchup will travel to face the No. 1 seed Colorado Rapids in the Western Conference semifinals, hosted at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park in Commerce City. That match will hold the distinction of being the first MLS Cup playoff match to be played on Thanksgiving Day.
This year will mark the Timbers' fourth straight MLS postseason appearance and their seventh appearance overall. Portland earned the right to host their first-round playoff match by finishing as the No. 4 seed in the Western Conference. They ended their regular season Sunday night with a 3-0 thrashing of Austin FC. The win was their 17th victory of the season - a new MLS era club record for total wins.
You can read the full press release and see the rest of the league’s playoff schedule here.