With the Cascadia Cup on the line, and one of the biggest matches amongst those involved in the northwestern derby, the team will be 2 1/2 hours south of the match– seeking a chance to improve their Western Conference standing against FC Dallas. The Sounders will be on a the sidelines and possibly scoreboard watching as The Timbers continue up I-90 to play Vancouver for their first piece of MLS hardware.
Portland will be seeking their first 3 points on the road this season and it’s the only result that would allow them to overtake the Sounders in the 3-team Cascadia Cup. This seems like a pretty good deal for Seattle until you realize that the Whitecaps have yet to earn 3-points against either of their rivals since joining MLS.
So a team that hasn’t won on the road in 18 matches against a team that in 9 games have yet to also secure multiple points in a match against their rivals. The game seems like it would be an all together epic encounter and part of me is going to be torn between keeping up with it and keeping up with the Sounders game.
You can tell that the Timbers are have an air of desperation and while you can talk about what happens when you back a caged animal into a corner, the Timbers hardly have the attacking pieces to counter the ‘Caps strong defense. That being said they have enough in the likes of Bright Dike, Darlington Nagbe, Sal Zizzo and their Captain Jack Jewsbury to create some trouble for DeMerit, YP Lee and the strength of the Whitecaps.
Word is that Darren Mattocks, who injured himself versus the Sounders, could potentially return and Omar Salgado, whose been out since May, should dress and may also see minutes in tomorrows battle. This is a huge swing for a Whitecaps force that has been largely inept up front since mid-season transaction that saw the team part ways with several key pieces.
I personally think that the only way that this game could truly end is in a tie. It would be a very unfulfilling draw for the Whitecaps would then need a FC Dallas loss to reach the playoffs and it would still keep them from defeating a Cascadian foe. It give the Timbers hope up until the very end of the match when they would just fall short of their esteemed goals and would remain winless on the road for the 2012 season.
Like I said that’s how I see it. But I suppose tomorrow will truly reveal how things will go down.