The latest MLS weekend concludes in the early hours of Monday morning when the Portland Timbers play just their third home match of the campaign when they take on FC Dallas in the Western Conference.
After a period of struggle, the Timbers are beginning to get their act together and get a charge going but they face a test against a Dallas outfit who are always tough to beat, although perhaps not quite so much on the road.
After Colorado Rapids picked up an impressive win earlier in the weekend, the Portland Timbers enter this match bottom of the Western Conference table. Despite being in that position they are only seven points off the play-off places, with games in hand and a whole barrel load of home matches to play so actually if there is a real life definition of the term false position, they certainly occupy it.
Generally Portland are strong in front of their own fans and are one of the best teams in MLS so it would be a surprise if they don’t push on and stake a claim for the title later in the season. They have won two of their last four matches and although they lost in midweek they rested nearly all of their starters so we probably shouldn’t take a lot of notice of that.
Dallas are always a competitive side in the Western Conference but they often lack the tools to go really deep these days and while that makes them tough to beat it doesn’t really have them as title contenders and that is how their season has been to date. That said they go into this match unbeaten in their last four outings so they merit respect regardless of their long-term opportunities.
On the road it is a completely different story for FC Dallas. They head to Portland without a win in any of their last four road trips and that is something that is going to have to change if they are going to be a force come the postseason time. Now would be a good time to start but it won’t be easy to see off a confident Timbers outfit.
Portland Timbers will be without Andy Polo for this match. He is with the Peru national team who made the semi-finals of the Copa America earlier in the weekend. Bill Tuiloma is missing too as he has an injury.
FC Dallas are also without a player who is on international duty as Reggie Cannon remains away with the United States side. By and large they have a full squad to select from aside from that which is one positive for them.
I like the Portland Timbers here. They look a really good outfit with new signing Fernandez in the side and I expect them to come through here. Fernandez gives their attacking unit an extra dimension. No longer is it so reliant on Diego Valeri to deliver the goods which is a good thing for them. They had an excellent win over Houston here last weekend and I fancy them to follow that up against another Texan team here.
FC Dallas haven’t been in bad form but you can’t go to Vancouver and lose if you are a champion side so that result was certainly a concern but just generally they don’t convince as much as I would like on the road. The home side are a little tight on the prices at 7/10 but there is enough juice in that to pull me in.
WON – Back Portland Timbers to beat FC Dallas for a 4/10 stake at 1.70 with ComeOn
Back them here: