Portland Timbers Season Preview


Justin Bian

The Portland Timbers look to finish high in the Western Conference this season.

“Alexander Callens…and the breakthrough moment for the boys from the Bronx!” 

One penalty was all it took for Portland to lose their grasp on raising their second MLS championship. After a crushing defeat in the MLS Finals to NYCFC, the Portland Timbers are prepared to make another championship run this year. 

In an interview with 90min, head coach Gio Savarese talked about his excitement for the upcoming season.

“We need to enjoy the process, and set high bars in ourselves, knowing that we need to stay in a middle ground because it’s going to be high moments, lower moments,” Savarese said. “But it’s how we navigate through as a group that is going to make the difference.”

There are many players that will be key in leading the team to important wins. Sebastián Blanco is the main Timbers playmaker and creator, and recently signed a contract for two more years at the club. He scored nine goals and assisted six in 27 matches last season. 

A few more important players include center midfielder Diego Chará and winger Yimmi Chará. Diego is critical in solidifying the midfield, winning the ball back, and playing simple on the offensive end. Yimmi is one of the Timbers’ greatest attacking assets, with six goals and five assists last season. He has already proved vital to the team, as he scored a bicycle kick in a 2-2 draw against New England. You can find that goal here.

The Timbers have signed a few new players this season. Defender Justin Rasmussen was the Timbers’ first pick in the MLS SuperDraft, and was recently signed from Grand Canyon University. Other notable signings include David Ayala and Diego Gutiérrez. The Timbers hope to develop these young players to prepare for the future.

As of March 18, the Timbers have earned five points from three matches, with two ties and one win. The first two draws were strong showings against the New England Revolution and Los Angeles FC. Their latest game was against Austin FC, earning an impressive 1-0 win off of a Bill Tuiloma header in the 62nd minute. Portland is currently 6th in the Western Conference. With a long season ahead, the Timbers hope to finish in a high playoff spot to set themselves up for another championship run.