Box to Box: All eyes on the Northwest
Saturday’s derby at Seattle Sounders FC is the first of two highly-anticipated matches this season between the heated Northwest rivals, and it’s the first time Timbers fans will get to see the “Rose City” red kits in live action. Ahead of Saturday’s clash, we dug out a Sports Illustrated story from 1975 detailing an early August derby match in Seattle. Also, ESPN has its take on MLS’s most intense rivalry.
The Sports Illustrated Vault features a detailed piece written by Pat Putnam of an early August 1975 clash between Seattle and Portland in a playoff-implication filled match in the NASL. Seattle ended up winning 3-2 in overtime, but not before some late-match heroics from the Timbers put the Sounders on the ropes.
SBNation blog Stumptown Footy runs a statistical comparison of the Timbers and the Sounders. According to writer Ryan Gates, the numbers lean toward Portland on the offensive side and Seattle on the defensive end.
The Wall Street Journal, yes - that’s right - has a rather tongue-in-cheek look at the rivalry by focusing on the fans' views of each other.
Goal.com brings us the anatomy of a rivalry while laying out some of the most notable acts of derision in MLS this season. Looks like Seattle v. Portland has helped spark a few attempts to build other MLS rivalries.
Each week, we’ll give you some insight behind enemy lines and show you what they’re saying about the Timbers’ opponent.
Seattle Times’ columnist Steve Kelley says that Sounders v. Timbers is the reigniting of a true Northwest rivalry that had faded as rivalries in other sports in the two cities had
faded in recent years.
ESPN’s Jeff Carlisle uses Seattle forward Roger Levesque’s ill-fated one-off with Portland in 2008 as one example of MLS’s most intense, and arguably, most historic rivalry.
Seattle goalkeeper Kasey Keller, a former University of Portland player, is retiring following this season. Sports Illustrated’s Grant Wahl has a column highlighting Keller’s post-career ambitions.
For Seattle assistant coach Brian Schmetzer, the Northwest rivalry goes back all the way to when Schmetzer signed with the Sounders in 1980.