MLS News

28 June 2:10 pm

With the Timbers looking ahead to Saturday's match with Colorado Rapids (6pm PT, KPDX TV, Timbers Television Network; 750 AM The Game / La Pantera 940), many corners of the media are still talking about the incredible environment on display last Sunday in Portland's 2-1 victory over Seattle Sounders FC.

The Portland Business Journal took a look at how MLS worked to promote the game on a national scale and how they're looking to further expand rivalries across the league.

 Photo: Craig Mitchelldyer

Today, The Guardian in England published a great examination of the constant game of tifo one-upsmanship between the Timbers Army and Seattle's Emerald City Supporters. With the Timbers Army's massive banner fresh in Portland fan's minds, Graham Parker writes,

[As] the latest banner was raised, and the latest visual gauntlet laid down, it was hard not to respect the sheer dedication and commitment the Timbers Army had put in to honoring one of their club legends [Clive Charles] this Sunday, whatever the origins of the art form in the US. Multiple hundreds of hours of labor go into producing an image that may appear only momentarily, but that has the potential to leave an indelible memory. 

Speaking of the hundreds of hours of work put into creating the tifo, be sure to watch this Friday's June 29 Timbers in 30 (6:30pm PT, Fox 12 Oregon) as they'll have a special behind-the-scenes look into how the latest banner was constructed.

The Sporting News sent ace soccer writer Brian Straus here on Sunday to cover the Cascadia Cup battle. Calling the rivalry "among the most intense in American sport," Straus goes in-depth to try to figure out why our corner of the country has bred such an undying competition between the two communities. Comparing the Portland-Seattle clash to other rivalries from around the world doesn't quite work as its roots lie in a different area.

The Glasgow neighbors are divided by religion -- the Protestants support Rangers and the Catholics back Celtic. Elsewhere around the world, great (and occasionally violent) soccer rivalries revolve around politics, economics or geography. In the Pacific Northwest, it’s about civic identity.

Want to know more about how that civic identity operates within the larger ideal of what the very term "Cascadia" means? Portland Monthly's Martin Patail goes behind the deeper concept of the term and how "The Doug"--the green-white-blue flag with the massive Doug Fir emblazoned in the center that can be seen flying at all matches between Portland, Seattle, and Vancouver--is really part of a bigger discussion about a region's "independent state of mind."

It's clear the Cascadia ideal and rivalry therein--be it on the field or off--is stronger than ever.

28 June 10:55 am

John Strong, voice of the Portland Timbers, headed out east a little ahead of the team this week as he travels to Kansas City to make his national broadcast debut on the NBC Sports Network. Calling the Midwest rivalry game between Sporting Kansas City and Chicago Fire at LIVESTRONG Sporting Park on Friday evening at 5pm PT, Strong will be joined in the booth with former MLS player and Olympian Brian Dunseth.

Friday’s match is the first of five matches Strong will call with Dunseth for NBC Network and he is already adjusting to the KC heat.

 

 Photo: Portland Timbers

 

Soccer fans will undoubtedly recognize Strong on Friday and they should also be familiar with Dunseth who is the main soccer analyst for Real Salt Lake broadcasts as well as having been an analyst with Fox Soccer. It will be a great rivalry match to watch with a familiar voice to help guide the way. Keep an eye on @StrongMLS and @BP_TOW on Twitter for updates from the road.

Following the match, Strong will hop a plane to Denver to call the Timbers game against the Colorado Rapids on Saturday with Robbie Earle (6pm PT, KPDX TV, Timbers Television Network).

 

17 May 10:15 am

adidas Soccer unveiled a new ad this morning online touting their revolutionary miCoach Smart Soccer system. Set to debut on Saturday during the Chelsea-Bayern Munich Champions League Final on FOX, the ad features a starring role for Timbers midfielder/forward Darlington Nagbe alongside fellow co-star, the Timbers Army.

Filmed in part during the Timbers 1-0 win over Sporting Kansas City last month, there are also appearances by some other guys.

Okay, yes, those other guys are pretty good MLS'ers too: SKC's Teal Bunbury, FC Dallas' Brek Shea, and Real Salt Lake's Javier Morales

After shooting footage during the Timbers-SKC match, the adidas crew spent the next day utilizing locker rooms and other areas inside JELD-WEN Field to shoot the players' individual scenes. Check it out:

Got a story, tip, soccer tidbit to share? Send it in to thebackcut (at) portlandtimbers.com.

10 May 2:43 pm

With the Houston Dynamo opening their new BBVA Compass Stadium this weekend, MLSsoccer.com takes a look at some of the most memorable MLS stadium debuts. 

With all due respect to our Canadian neighbors in Toronto, and the Midwestern folks in Kansas City, the JELD-WEN Field opening takes the cake. Beyond that, though, the opening of Houston's new field marks another development in the growth of soccer-specific stadiums in MLS. 

And it's another great stadium to watch a match. Give Armchair Analyst Matthew Doyle's Three for Thursday a read and then re-live the House of Pane opening.

What are some of your favorite memories at JELD-WEN Field?

Got a story, tip, soccer tidbit to share? Send it in to thebackcut (at) portlandtimbers.com.