The Portland Timbers have played two exceptionally competitive matches at home to start the 2015 regular season, and while they haven't lost a match, they are still looking for their first win. They turn their attention to the road and a visit to Sporting Park to play Sporting Kansas City, a team that moved from the Eastern Conference out West for 2015.
We have complete player evaluations from the Portland Timbers 2 all draw against the Los Angeles Galaxy from back on March 15. We have marks for every player that appeared, the officials, coaches and a complete team mark.
With the spring weather providing a blustery background, the Portland Timbers were hoping to get a home win against the Los Angeles Galaxy. While Portland got their first two goals of the 2015 season courtesy of Fanendo Adi, their defense struggled at points and conceded goals to Gyasi Zardes and a stoppage time header from former USL Timber Alan Gordon as the teams played to a 2 all draw.
With the Portland weather getting back to more familiar settings for late Winter & early Spring, the Portland Timbers finish their two match home stand to start the 2015 season against the Los Angeles Galaxy. The two sides have combined for some wild fireworks on and off the pitch, and here's what I am watching for in the Galaxy's only visit this year to Providence Park.
We have complete player evaluations from the Portland Timbers scoreless draw with Real Salt Lake back on March 7. Included are ratings for each individual Timbers player that appeared in the match, a composite rating for the team, coaches, opponent and a mark for the officiating.
In a home opener that was in some doubt up until days before its official date, the Portland Timbers were hoping to start strongly in their home debut against Real Salt Lake. While the defense for the Timbers was much improved - due to the acquisition of former RSL defender Nat Borchers - the offense couldn't get anything past RSL goalkeeper Nick Rimando despite several opportunities all night as teams played to a scoreless draw.
Now that the collective bargaining agreement has been ratified, we can now turn our attention to the 2015 MLS season. Portland starts their campaign battling with Real Salt Lake, a team that has traditionally given them trouble. With several personnel changes, however, RSL could be looking to regain their footing although they've usually been very resilient with various changes over the years.
In our final installment of the 2015 season preview, we look at the stable of forwards the Portland Timbers will employ to start the year. While each of them has lots of talent, there are also questions surrounding each scorer that must be addressed in order to achieve the success I think this team is capable of.
In part 8 of our 2015 season preview, we take a look at the midfielders that will wear the Timbers crest this season. While there are some early season injury issues - three players are either out or rehabbing for a return - and two are already dealing with various knocks. That being said, if this group can get healthy, it will help push Portland that much closer to the postseason.
in part 7 of our 2015 Portland Timbers season preview, we look at the Timbers defensive line and its components. While there are certainly several experienced players available, there is also an intriguing mix of young players that give them building blocks for the future.
In part 6 of our 2015 Portland Timbers season preview, we finally get a look at the players who will be wearing the Timbers crest, starting with the men in goal. While there are questions about the group, it would appear they have the talent to continue the trend of excellent performances in goal for the team.
In part 5 of our 2015 season preview, we look at the names and faces of those behind the players on the pitch. The Portland Timbers have been successful in making the transition from USL to MLS, and are now considered one of the strongest brands in MLS. Much of that success is due to the organization as a whole, and 2015 showcases some additional changes and updates designed to keep up the progress.
In part 3 of our 2015 MLS Season Preview, we look at the 10 sides that will be fighting for the top spot in the Eastern Conference. While D.C. United won the East in 2014, they will have plenty of competition from Columbus, Toronto FC, New England and Chicago
The Portland Timbers played their second of three matches in the Simple Tournament when they hosted the Chicago Fire. Facing one of their MLS brethren for the second straight match, the Timbers used a lineup mostly of reserves and a Michael Nanchoff goal to take an early lead. Chicago was able to level, but they got some help from Timbers defender Norberto Paparatto, who headed a corner kick in accidentally to give the Fire their only tally of the night as the teams played to a 1 all draw.
The Portland Timbers returned back to Providence Park for their annual pre-season tournament - now called the Simple Tournament - for the first of three exhibitions matches. Facing their Cascadia rivals from Canada, the Timbers couldn't overcome a goal from former Timbers defender Pa Modou Kah against his old side for his new club as the Whitecaps took the match 1 to 0.
The 2015 MLS season is fast approaching, and I start my look at the upcoming season although we begin with a different topic - the state of MLS. With the players and league locked into discussions about terms of an updated collective bargaining agreement, there could be joy in stadiums on March 7 when the season should begin or frustration should a strike or work stoppage occur if the sides can't agree on a contract.
I had a chance to attend practice for the Timbers back on January 27 and the experience forced me to try and balance a practical look at the Portland Timbers for 2015 with unbridled optimism. At least for now, I'm excited about the mix of players and hope they can balance the energy and passion from the early portion of the season over the long haul with unexpected challenges looming on the horizon.
The next player draft for MLS took place on January 20 when the league completed the final two rounds of the MLS Super Draft. Portland had two selections in the festivities and added two additional young players that could add depth for the future and potential starters for the Timbers 2 USL Pro team that starts play later this spring.
The first stage of the 2015 MLS Super Draft took place as part of the NSCAA Convention in Philadelphia, PA with all 20 MLS teams making picks of recently graduated or allocated player from college programs. 42 players were allocated to the various clubs in the first two rounds of four total, and the Portland Timbers picked up four players with varying backgrounds and experience.
The Timbers Mailbag gets opened with questions about current transactions, Timbers news and MLS rules in general, and we do our best to address them while the 2015 MLS Super Draft adds new depth for Portland.
Just before the Portland Timbers released their full 2015 schedule, the team announced the re-signing of forward Gaston Fernandez to a contract for the 2015 season. The terms and conditions were not announced, but with Diego Valeri and Will Johnson recovering from injury, the return of "La Gata" was thought by many to be extremely vital for the upcoming campaign.
With news slowing down for the holidays, I take a look back at the most recent updates in Portland Timbers news just before 2015 begins. January expects to be busy with a full schedule release and more player news, but there were some important moves made to finish 2014.
Major League Soccer staged two separate drafts on December 10 in their first big off-season movement, giving their two newest clubs - New York City FC and Orlando City - a chance to populate their rosters. With Portland keeping 11 current players plus a handful more on other roster exceptions, the team was nervous about big losses but ended up losing just one player on the day - goalkeeper Donovan Ricketts.
There was plenty of player movement on December 8 as the Portland Timbers announced several moves. While they did mostly concentrate on correcting defensive deficiencies that plagued the 2014 season, they also added some offensive weaponry while they continue to negotiate with Gaston Fernandez about a return to Portland.
The offseason for the Portland Timbers gets started a bit earlier than they had anticipated with the November 19 MLS Dispersal Draft. The league dissolved the former Chivas USA club after the 2014 season, and the festivities will give existing MLS teams (including the new additions for 2015, Orlando City and New York City FC) a chance to add some veteran talent.
The Portland Timbers were hoping against the odds that they could sneak their way into the MLS postseason, but they would need a win versus FC Dallas and a Vancouver draw or loss to Colorado later in the day. While the Timbers did their part in getting a win in Texas behind Darlington Nagbe's first goal of the 2014 regular season, but Vancouver beat Colorado to earn the fifth spot and end the Timbers' season.
After an emotional week that saw the Portland Timbers bounced from the CONCACAF Champions League, the team turns their attention to their final regular season match in 2014 in Dallas. There is still a chance for the playoffs, but they will be facing an FC Dallas team that has something to play for as well in addition to needing help from Vancouver in their match hosting Colorado.
We have complete player evaluations for the Portland Timbers from their scoreless draw with Real Salt Lake back on October 17. There are ratings for every Timbers player that appeared in the match, plus composite ratings for the team, coaches, opponent and officiating.
The Portland Timbers were hoping to move closer to secure their postseason plans in hosting Real Salt Lake on October 17 at Providence Park, but RSL had other designs to help their post season positioning. While the Timbers applied relentless pressure on goal, they couldn't find anything to break past RSL goalkeeper Nick Rimando as the teams played to a scoreless draw.
The final regular season match at Providence Park is happening on October 17 for the Portland Timbers, and it's been an interesting season to say the least. While the Timbers have set team records for offense, their playoff future isn't secure with two matches left - and the team will need help in order to secure any sort of postseason date.
The Portland Timbers took a big step in terms of player development with the announcement on October 14 of the creation of their own USL Pro affiliate, labeled Timbers 2 or T2 for short. The new club, playing their home matches at the University of Portland, will give the team a professional team locally with the express design of nurturing and honing younger soccer talent.
We have complete player evaluations for the Portland Timbers in their 3 to 0 victory over the San Jose Earthquakes on October 8 at home. Included are marks for every individual player that appeared, plus composite ratings for the coaches, officials, opponent and entire team.
The Portland Timbers were hoping to make a statement while putting pressure on other teams in the Western Conference playoff chase, and they got the chance versus San Jose, a club they had defeated back on October 4 on the road. With Rodney Wallace scoring his third goal against the Earthquakes of 2014 and Diego Valeri tallying a second half brace, the Timbers secured a 3 to 0 victory to jump into fifth place in the West for now.
With an unfortunate incident in gardening keeping me away from the Blog for a few days, I'm playing catchup before the October 8 battle between Portland and San Jose. Four days earlier, the team earned a huge win in Santa Clara over the Earthquakes behind a brace from Rodney Wallace, but the return trip to Portland could be tough for San Jose as they are missing several key players.
The Portland Timbers fight for their playoff lives on October 4 when they travel to San Jose to face the Earthquakes in MLS league play. The two teams have staged several contentious, close battles over the years, and the stakes for this match are huge for the visitors. They will need to earn the victory without two key components of their attack as well, but the Timbers have rallied against the odds many times before.
With a slight break in the schedule, we open up the Timbers mailbag to talk about the playoffs, 2015 expansion, and some of the other topics about the Portland Timbers going on before their big match in San Jose on October 4.
We have complete player evaulations from the Portland Timbers 3 to 2 loss to Toronto FC back on September 27. There are marks for every Portland Timbers player that appeared in the match in addition to marks for the coaches, opponent and officials.
The Portland Timbers wanted to continue the momentum gained from strong play recently, and certainly had things their way against Toronto FC with a 2 goal lead despite losing Will Johnson to injury. Unfortunately, defensive woes on set pieces allowed Toronto FC to come back to secure a 3 to 2 win.
We have complete player ratings from the Portland Timbers 3 to 0 victory over the Vancouver Whitecaps on September 20 at home. Included are individual ratings for every Timbers player that appeared plus composite scores for the team, coaches, officials and opponent.
The Portland Timbers were hoping for a dominant effort at home to give their postseason aspirations a big boost, especially with the Vancouver Whitecaps - the team just above them in the playoff chase in the fifth spot - visiting. The Timbers used an organized defense, flair from Diego Valeri and two scores from Fanendo Adi to secure a 3 to 0 victory over their Canadian Cascadian rivals.