Portland Timbers to honor club-great Mick Hoban as part of festivities for Saturday’s MLS season opener at Providence Park

NASL legend Mick Hoban to be inducted into club's Ring of Honor during Timbers-Union match

PORTLAND, Ore. — The Timbers kick off the 2014 MLS regular season Saturday as they play host to the Philadelphia Union at Providence Park at 7:30 p.m. (Pacific), presented by Alaska Airlines. The Timbers will debut their new retro-inspired, green-and-gold third kits on Saturday against the Union.

On Saturday, the club will induct NASL Timbers player Mick Hoban into the Portland Timbers Ring of Honor during a special halftime ceremony. The first contracted player for the Timbers ahead of their inaugural 1975 NASL season, Hoban made 65 league appearances for the club from 1975-78, while also helping foster the early development of what has become a hugely popular soccer culture in Portland by serving as the club’s community relations manager. Remaining active in the Portland soccer scene after retiring in 1978, Hoban was hired by Blue Ribbon Sports (now called Nike), and helped create the company’s soccer business. Continuing his business career as vice president of soccer promotions for Umbro USA from 1988-95, Hoban then helped form soccer consulting firm, Soccer Solutions, LLC, with current U.S. Men’s National Team head coach Jurgen Klinsmann.

Always active in the local soccer community, Hoban has coached at the club level, as a member of the OYSA and has served as a volunteer assistant coach at the University of Portland. Hoban has been strongly involved in volunteerism, lending his efforts to Special Olympics Oregon, the Alzheimer’s Association of Oregon, Dynasty House, Harper’s Playground, and the National Soccer Coaches Association of America.

The Portland Timbers Ring of Honor recognizes standout players and figures in the club’s history who were great contributors both on and off the field. The Timbers Ring of Honor includes Timbers NASL greats John Bain, Clive Charles, Jimmy Conway and longtime club icon Jim “Timber Jim” Serrill.

The match against the Union will be telecast live on ROOT SPORTS and carried live on the radio at 750 The Game and in Spanish on La Pantera 940AM.

The Timbers completed their preseason schedule and the Rose City Invitational, presented by Parklane Mattresses, March 1. Portland compiled a 2-1-4 record over the preseason, and out-scored its opponents 6-4. The club’s defense recorded three shutouts during the preseason and did not concede a goal from the run of play through its seven preseason games. Saturday’s match marks the start of Portland’s fourth MLS campaign, a season that will include play in the 2014-15 CONCACAF Champions League and Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup competitions.

Playing host to Philadelphia for the second time in the last three MLS season-opening matches, the Timbers and Union will meet for the fifth time since 2011. The Timbers have defeated the Union in both previous matchups at Providence Park, including a 3-1 victory in the 2012 season opener. Overall, the Timbers lead the all-time MLS series with an unbeaten mark of 2-0-2 against Philadelphia. The two sides played to a scoreless draw last season on July 20, 2013, at PPL Park in Chester, Pa.