Portland needs to overturn a two-goal deficit when it travels home for the second leg of the Western Conference final.The Portland Timbers have had plenty of success at home this season, but they'll have to come up with one of their best performances of the season Sunday if they are to reach MLS Cup.
Real Salt Lake dominated the Timbers in the first leg of the Western Conference final at Rio Tinto Stadium, winning 4-2. The silver lining for Portland came in the form of Frédéric Piquionne's last-second header, which gave Caleb Porter's side a more manageable two-goal deficit heading home for the second leg.
Portland has been nearly unbeatable at JELD-WEN Field this season, posting a 14-1-5 record on its home ground this year in all competitions. The team's last (and only) loss at home this season came all the way back on March 9.
However, RSL has been something of a bogey team for Portland recently. Jason Kreis' men have a nine-game undefeated streak in all competitions against the Timbers, including two draws on the road in the league and a U.S. Open Cup semifinal win this season.
Also working against Portland is recent MLS history, as no team has overturned a two-goal deficit in the second leg of a two-game series since Kansas City did it in 2004. Incidentally, Portland's Jack Jewsbury was a part of that Wizards team.
Caleb Porter's side has scored two goals or more at home eight times this year, and it will have to accomplish that feat just to get Sunday's game to extra time, or RSL will be making its second appearance in MLS Cup.