Soccer, soccer and more soccer

Coming off their 1-0 win over FC Dallas over the weekend, the Portland Timbers keep up their busy week welcoming LAFC to Providence Park on Wednesday, July 21 (7:30pm PT, TICKETS, FS1). They then make a quick turn to travel to face Minnesota United FC on Saturday, July 24 at Allianz Field in St. Paul (5pm PT, FOX 12 PLUS).

The Thorns, who also won this past weekend in a 2-1 victory over Orlando to go atop the NWSL standings, hit the road on July 24 to face the Houston Dash at BBVA Stadium (5:30pm PT, FOX 12 PLUS, Paramount+).

Want more soccer? It's time for the Olympics!

The Tokyo Olympics begin this week and there’s a slew of Thorns players in action plus a Timbers player as well.

Christine Sinclair and Canada play their first game in Group E on July 21 against Japan at 3:30am PT (NBCSN) and then face Chile on July 24 at 12:30am PT (NBColympics.com)

Meanwhile, Thorns Crystal Dunn, Adrianna Franch, Lindsey Horan, Becky Sauerbrunn and the USWNT get underway in Group G on July 21 at 1:30am PT against Sweden (NBColympics.com). Their second group stage match versus New Zealand is July 24 at 4:30am PT (NBCSN).

On the women’s side, the 12 teams in the tournament were drawn into three groups (E, F, and G – to differentiate with the men’s groups of A-D) of four teams each. Competing in a round-robin format, the top two teams of each group advance to the quarterfinals along with the two best third-place teams.

For the men’s side, Timbers defender Claudio Bravo and Argentina begin their Group C play on Thursday, July 22 against Australia at 3:30am PT (Olympic Channel) then face Egypt on July 25 at 12:30am PT (NBColympics.com). For the men, there are four groups of four teams with the top two teams in each group advancing to the quarterfinals.

While not in the Olympics but still on the international stage, Timbers midfielder Eryk Williamson and the U.S. Men's National Team, who took the top spot in Group B of the 2021 Gold Cup, will play on Sunday, July 25 against the runner up of Group C – either Jamaica or Costa Rica.

An important milestone for Mark Parsons

Thorns head coach Mark Parsons reached an important accomplishment this past weekend in the team's 2-1 victory over the Pride. It marked Parsons' 75th career regular-season NWSL win (55 with Portland) placing him second all-time in league history.

ThornsFC.com and Timbers.com writer Richard Farley wrote about what this means to Parsons and the club amidst the current season and play of the team.

Together, though, all this trivia paints a picture. The defensive solidity. The team’s current form. The lopsided shot totals the Thorns are putting up, or the fact that, despite various rosters and approaches, Parsons has always found ways to keep his teams near the top of the table. All those facets explain why the number 75 is so important. It’s not the product of one solution.

MLS All-Star Game voting ends this week

Voting for the 2021 MLS All-Star Game presented by Target ends this week on July 21 at 11:59pm PT.

The MLS All-Star Game will be held on Aug. 25 against the Liga MX All-Stars in Los Angeles at Banc of California Stadium.

PTFC Birthdays This Week

  • July 24: Thorns midfielder Angela Salem

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