The international break is upon us in MLS, meaning that all sides — including your Portland Timbers — will not be playing any matches for the next few weeks. That’s probably a good thing for the Timbers. They’ve been dealing with numerous injuries recently and some rest will probably do them some good.
Despite the injuries, the Timbers were able to notch six points in the final three matches of this month. All things considered, that’s not a bad stretch. The shutout loss to the Philadelphia Union, however, certainly doesn’t leave one with a good taste in their mouth. Here’s where a few major outlets say the Timbers stand among the league’s clubs.
MLSSoccer.com has the Timbers at ninth in the league, a whopping five spots lower than last week. J. Sam Jones penalized the Timbers for their struggles defending set pieces, but did note that the injuries to the Timbers clouds where they really stand.
Man, the injuries are just absolutely brutal right now. Hopefully some time off helps get some folks back out on the field. It would be tough if they were simply missing Diego Chara, but they’re missing Chara, two DPs, two goalkeepers and five other players right now. That being said, the rest of your players should be able to figure out that they need to mark 6-foot-4 Kacper Przybylko on set pieces. Portland may be hurting for a while this season, but would you be surprised at all if they got healthy later in the year and made a run?
ESPN’s Jeff Carlisle and Kyle Bonagura were not as kind to Portland, putting them 17th among the teams 28 clubs. Portland’s lack of consistency was enough for Bonagura to knock the Timbers down into the bottom half of the league.
The Timbers had no answers in a trip to play the reigning Supporters’ Shield winners, losing to Philadelphia 3-0. A lack of consistency from week to week has been a theme all year.
Finally, Bleacher Report’s Joe Tansey has the Timbers 15th, two spots below their previous ranking at 13th. However, Tansey is optimistic that the Timbers can turn it around in the coming months.
You can’t fault the Portland Timbers too much for losing 3-0 to Philadelphia on Sunday. Portland is dealing with one of the lengthiest injury lists in the league, with Sebastian Blanco, Diego Chara, Andy Polo and Jeff Attinella among its banged-up starters. Despite the injuries and the early-season focus on the CONCACAF Champions League, the Timbers are in seventh place in the West with nine points. The Timbers are one of the candidates to go on a run in June and July since four of their next six games take place at Providence Park.
Do you agree with these rankings? Let us know below!