Match Preview: Union at Portland Timbers, 9/17 at 6 PM

The boys in blue will travel to the Rose City to try to steal a point (or three) from the Timbers.

The Union sit in fourth in the East and are above the red line by seven points. The Timbers are sixth in the West; four points separates them and seventh-place Vancouver in the race for the final playoff spot. The Union are coming off of a disheartening draw against Montreal which saw them drop two points from a late set piece, the third time they’ve dropped points from a late set piece this year. The Timbers defeated Real Salt Lake last Saturday 1-0, but played a CCL match on Wednesday so the Union will have a rest advantage.

Both teams desperately need points to keep pace in the playoff push. For the Union, not only is a playoff berth on the line, but a home playoff game as well if they can keep fourth place or jump to third.

Last year, the two teams met in Chester. The Union beat a depleted Timbers team 3-0 on the strength of three second-half goals, two by Vincent Nogueira and one by Andrew Wenger. It was the Union’s first ever win against Portland.

First XI: Blake; Fabinho, Marquez, Yaro, Rosenberry; Creavalle, Bedoya; Pontius, Barnetta, Herbers; Sapong

Prediction: The Union leave the Rose City empty-handed. Timbers 2, Union 1

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