Today's Inaugural Community Shield match ensures that the Seattle-Portland rivalry will continue its 35-year run in which the two teams played every season they both fielded teams. The rivalry has stretched across three leagues.
Although it's being billed as a friendly, the 13,000-plus fans who will be in attendance may not feel the same way. The two teams have met 60 times, with the Sounders holding a 34-21-5 advantage, including wins in each of the past two meetings.
There are reportedly four busloads of Timbers fans making the trip to Seattle. The game will kick off at 6 p.m. with plenty of tickets still available. Proceeds from ticket sales will go to the Boys and Girls Club of Washington State, Seattle SCORES, Soccer Saves and Washington Youth Soccer.
While the match may not have any significance in terms of the standings, it also marks the penultimate preseason game for the Sounders.
"We're anticipating not having the season starting [on time]. As of now, for us, we're very far apart — even with the mediator there in D.C. We're hoping things can get done, but quite frankly I don't think we're confident things will."
Will this be a showcase of the League's future when tens of thousands of fans show up for a preseason friendly between long and bitter rivals, or will it be the last time we see Sounders in their home Rave Green for the forseeable future?