Box to Box: Timbers clean up weekly honors and more

Beckham: We know that teams come here and it’s their cup final

Kalif Alhassan - Timbers vs. FC Dallas, 4.17.11

Photo Credit: 
Photo by Craig Mitchelldyer

A two-game, six-point home stand gave the Timbers plenty to be happy about after an unsteady start to the season. The team is looking to ride that run of confidence and good play to a road result down in the City of Angels on Saturday. Also, “youth” is the name of the game in Portland, Kalif Alhassan’s good week and Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena explains why MLS is devoid of European-style rivalries.

Midfielder Kalif Alhassan put in praise-worthy performances at JELD-WEN Field last week, doling out three assists and helping Portland score seven goals in two matches. SoccerByIves editor Ives Galarcep bestowed the 20-year-old Ghanaian with his MLS Player of the Week honor for Week 5.

Geoffrey C. Arnold of The Oregonian explains the up-and-down start to MLS for Alhassan and how coach John Spencer utilized a “tough love” approach to turning the youngster on to a more professional path.

Several Timbers made the MLS Best XI for Week 5. Alhassan, midfielder Jack Jewsbury and defender Rodney Wallace all made the starting XI for Week 5, while forward Jorge Perlaza earned a spot in the honorable mention section.

Over on, Jack Jewsbury was the website’s Player of the Week, based chiefly on his leadership during the home stand, according to various beat writers.

Rodney Wallace and Jorge Perlaza made the Sports Illustrated Team of the Week, while the Timbers climbed from No. 17 to No. 12 in the power rankings. In the SoccerByIves power rankings, Portland ascended to No. 11 from the bottom.

Did you go to the Timbers home-opening win over the Chicago Fire? The Oregonian’s Bruce Ely created a Gigapan image that allows you to tag yourself and your friends on Facebook.

Jack Bell at the New York Times included a brief about the Timbers’ hot start at home and the play of Kalif Alhassan in his soccer blog.

The Timbers’ winning momentum will be tested against a Galaxy team that expects the return of stars David Beckham and Landon Donovan on Saturday, writes Geoffrey C. Arnold of The Oregonian.

A video on chronicles the Timbers Army and how they built the huge tifo displayed at the home opener on April 14.

California Dreamin’
Each week, we’ll give you some insight behind enemy lines and show you what they’re saying about the Timbers’ opponent.

During an incredible one-month stint in which Spanish powers Real Madrid and Barcelona tangle four times, Los Angeles Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena discusses MLS’s lack of rivalries and what’s needed to build them with Goal.comwriter Andrea Canales.

Galaxy defender Leonardo is lost for the season after a promising start. The 23-year-old Brazilian tore the anterior and lateral cruciate ligaments in his right knee during the final minutes of a 2-1 win over the Chicago Fire last week.

The Oregonian’s Geoffrey C. Arnold went to Los Angeles early to preview the upcoming game with the Galaxy

David Beckham says that playing the Galaxy, for many teams, is akin to playing in a cup final.’s Andrea Canales writes, the midfielder feels his side will be ready to face a Timbers team carrying some winning momentum.