Carson, CA (SportsNetwork.com) - The Portland Timbers will look to aid their
push for the MLS Supporters' Shield on Saturday when the club heads to the
StubHub Center to take on Chivas USA.
Portland enters the final matchday on 54 points, and its aspirations of a
Supporters' Shield triumph can only be obtained with a victory over Chivas in
addition to dropped points from Sporting Kansas City and a Red Bull New York
loss against the Chicago Fire on Sunday.
The Timbers are two points back of Real Salt Lake for the lead in the Western
Conference, and after the Claret and Cobalt wrapped up their campaign with a
2-1 defeat of Chivas on Wednesday, a win for Caleb Porter's side at the
StubHub Center would at least be enough for the club to clinch home field
advantage in the postseason.
Portland brings a seven-game unbeaten run into Saturday's clash, most recently
playing to a scoreless draw with RSL at Jeld-Wen Field. The result left the
top of the Western Conference table unchanged, but Porter was left
"We're disappointed any time we don't win, because winning is always the
goal," Porter said after the match. "We knew it would be a tight game, they're
a good team. I thought the game played out exactly the way we hoped it would
play out. (Real Salt Lake) didn't get many chances, I can't remember a quality
open look they had over the course of 90 minutes. It was a bit back-and-forth
in-between the boxes in a tight game, but I thought we were in control of the
game for the most part, especially in the second half."
The result clinched a first-ever playoff berth for Portland, a just reward in
the eyes of Jack Jewsbury following a season of maximum effort.
"It is definitely nice to look at the standings and to see the little 'X' next
to the team name," said Jewsbury. "It's been a while for the guys who have
been around here, it probably means a little bit more. We've put in a lot of
work; there's been some ups and downs. So at the end of the day, this team,
this year has been very good and very consistent and it means a lot for the
group to make the playoffs. Now, it's a matter of how far up we can get in the
Western Conference and once the playoffs start it's a whole new season."
Chivas, entering Saturday's campaign on just 26 points, has bottomed the West
for much of the campaign and already has begun looking toward next season.
"We have been having a preseason inside of this season," said head coach Jose
Luis Real. "My job as coach is to install things, basic things, in the part of
the season that I have been in charge, that will help us in the upcoming
The Goats have nothing to play for, but could still have a say in the final
seeding for the Western Conference playoffs. They were, however, unable to
play the role of the spoiler against Salt Lake on Wednesday.
The Sports Network