thumbnail Hello,
Live

MLS

  • June 11, 2011
  • • 10:36 PM
  • • Providence Park, Portland, Oregon
  • Referee: A. Okujala
  • • Attendance: 18627
0
FT
1

Head to Head Preview: Portland Timbers - Colorado Rapids

Head to Head Preview: Portland Timbers - Colorado Rapids

Getty Images

The Timbers will have their hands full with the defending MLS champions.

On Form

Portland Timbers:
Portland's center back pairing of Futty Danso and Eric Brunner has been in excellent form, as the two men have formed an understanding, allowing the Timbers' defense to slowly but steadily improve. Behind them, Troy Perkins has been in excellent form in goal, and once again impressed with a number of saves despite Portland's eventual 1-0 loss at Chivas USA. Jack Jewsbury has provided a steady hand in the midfield and has proved to be one of the more inspired roster additions for the team's inaugural year in MLS.

Colorado Rapids:
Back to being a constant fixture in the starting XI, Conor Casey is finally able to start putting goals in the back of the net. His scrappy and combative presence up top along with the possibility of Omar Cummings returning from injury should make Timbers keeper, Troy Perkins, fearful. Combine that with the shielding power of Matt Pickens and his unshakeable defensive wall of Kimura, Marshall, Moor, and Wallace and the Colorado Rapids are looking more like the reigning MLS Champions.

Off Target

Portland: Neither of the Timbers' first choice forwards, Kenny Cooper and Jorge Perlaza, has managed to hit the back of the net since an April 16 game against Dallas. This goal drought has been detrimental to Portland's results, especially as the midfield is doing reasonably well at creating chances for the front two. Both have proven goalscoring records, but sometimes the connection between the two and between the forward and midfield lines seems to be off. Furthermore, Portland's full backs, Rodney Wallace and Jeremy Hall, didn't have the best of showings against Chivas USA.

Colorado: Ending the last seven out of eight matches in a tie has been a frustrating defect in the Rapids performance. Although glad to be undefeated in those games, the inability to bring home three points haunts both players and fans. Quincy Amarikwa and Andre Akpan have struggled making goals happen, and need some refinement in their play making ability.

Tactics

Portland: Don't expect too much to change tactically, with John Spencer looking pretty settled in his 4-4-2 formation. Starting Darlington Nagbe versus Sal Zizzo will likely be the one big lineup question heading into Saturday's game. It will be interesting to see how Portland handles Colorado's own 4-4-2 setup at JELD-WEN Field, as the club will likely try to use the pitch to its advantage and compress Colorado's play even more, limiting the valuable influence of its wide players.

Colorado: Hungry for a win, the Rapids may be even more vigorous in their offensive play. With powerful midfielders like Jeff Larentowicz and Jamie Smith, look for more shots to be taken, and more possession converted into results.




Intangibles

Portland: JELD-WEN Field had been a fortress for Portland up until the defeat against D.C. United two weeks ago. If the Timbers are really serious about their playoff push, they will need to rediscover some of the magic that saw them win five straight home games to open the season.

Colorado: This will be the first time the Colorado Rapids have played at Jeld-Wen Field. The noise along with Timber Joey’s chainsaw may add a unique obstacle for the Rapids to overcome.

Prediction

Nicholas Rosano: The Timbers should be able to squeeze this one out, 1-0 to the home side.

Stephanie Gardner: When a team has tied as many times as the Rapids have in the past eight matches, the cycle must be broken. The streak will end Saturday night when the Rapids defeat Portland 2-1.

Keep updated with Major League Soccer by visiting Goal.com's MLS page and joining Goal.com's page.

Related

Field Report
Reader's Predictions
Top 3 Predictions
Head to Head
USA - Major League Soccer ‎(MLS)‎ Jul 18, 2014 Portland Timbers 2 - Colorado Rapids 1
  • Player Ratings
  • Match Report
  • Play by Play
  • Preview
USA - Major League Soccer ‎(MLS)‎ Mar 22, 2014 Colorado Rapids 2 - Portland Timbers 0
  • Player Ratings
  • Match Report
  • Play by Play
  • Preview
USA - Major League Soccer ‎(MLS)‎ Sep 20, 2013 Portland Timbers 1 - Colorado Rapids 0
  • Player Ratings
  • Match Report
  • Play by Play
  • Preview
USA - Major League Soccer ‎(MLS)‎ Jun 23, 2013 Portland Timbers 3 - Colorado Rapids 0
  • Player Ratings
  • Match Report
  • Play by Play
  • Preview
USA - Major League Soccer ‎(MLS)‎ Mar 30, 2013 Colorado Rapids 2 - Portland Timbers 2
  • Player Ratings
  • Match Report
  • Play by Play
  • Preview
Last Five Matches
Odds
Team News
Available Squads
1Troy PerkinsGoalkeeper
98Mamadou DansoDefender
2Eric BrunnerDefender
25Jeremy HallMidfielder
13Jack JewsburyDefender
21Diego Ferney CharáMidfielder
11Kalif AlhassanMidfielder
22Rodney WallaceDefender
6Darlington NagbeStriker
-J. PerlazaStriker
33Kenny CooperStriker
24Adin BrownGoalkeeper
18David HorstDefender
11Salvatore ZizzoMidfielder
23Ryan PoreMidfielder
14James MarcelinMidfielder
6Adam MoffatMidfielder
10Eddie JohnsonStriker
-Matt PickensGoalkeeper
-Scott PalgutaDefender
3Drew MoorDefender
-Tyrone MarshallDefender
27Kosuke KimuraDefender
20Jeff LarentowiczMidfielder
20Jamie SmithMidfielder
25Pablo MastroeniMidfielder
-W. ThompsonMidfielder
18Caleb FolanStriker
6Conor CaseyStriker
-Steward CeusGoalkeeper
2Danny EarlsDefender
-Michael HolodyDefender
-Anthony WallaceMidfielder
16Ross LaBauexMidfielder
24Quincy AmarikwaStriker
9Andre AkpanStriker

From the web

From the web