Three Big Storylines:
- Expect lightning in Frisco on Friday night as Rivalry Week in MLS heats up. Not that the FC Dallas and the Houston Dynamo are playing particularly well, the weather forecast is for scattered thunderstorms intensifying as the night goes on following a high of 95 degrees during the day. Sounds like a lovely night for some football! On Thursday FC Dallas announced that they gave Mauro Diaz, Moises Hernandez and Tesho Akindele new, multi-year contracts. It will be interesting to see if they press and try to live up to the improved contracts right away. For Houston, Brad Davis will be trying to prove the naysayers who questioned his inclusion in the USMNT Gold Cup roster wrong and have a big game.
- Rivalry Week features a full Saturday slate of traditional rivalry matches such as Philadelphia Union v Montreal Impact (the Jack McInerney game?), New England Revolution v Vancouver Whitecaps (the Lee Nguyen affair?), Toronto FC v DC United (Bob Bradley was an assistant there in 1996, likely with 9 year old Michael Bradley in tow), Sporting KC v Colorado Rapids (the Midwest v the Rockies?) and Real Salt Lake v Columbus Crew SC (I got nothing...). But is capped off by San Jose hosting the LA Galaxy where real acrimony exists and some incredibly entertaining games have been played, mostly because of one Landon Donovan.
- Before the main event, Seattle Sounders at Portland Timbers, on Sunday there is the next installment of the New York rivalry to be contested. New York Red Bulls travel to Yankee Stadium to take on New York City FC. The initial game was a very exciting affair that saw NYRB prevail 2-1 behind two Bradley Wright-Phillips goals. ESPN has moved this game from ESPN2 to ESPN and added a 30 minute pre-game show along with extended previews on Sportscenter planned over the weekend featuring Mix Diskerud.
From a Sounders Point of View:
New England, it would be great if you would do us a solid and take Vancouver down a notch or two. The Whitecaps are in the midst of their World Cup induced extended road trip which has seen them earn six points from three played so far including two wins in a row.
We are rooting for a decent amount of draws in these all Western Conference matchups, with the exception of San Jose v LA Galaxy. As much as we do not like San Jose right now, the Galaxy are looking to hit their stride with consecutive five goal outputs. First against the Union and on Wednesday in a 5-0 whitewashing of the Timbers. An argument could be made for the draw, but I will somehow find myself in the unfamiliar position of rooting for the Earthquakes.
National TV Listings:
FC Dallas v Houston Dynamo
Friday, 6:00 PM Pacific
Streaming: Univision Deportes
*SAP Button will have English commentary provided by Ramses Sandoval and Paul Caligiuri.
New York City FC v New York Red Bulls
Sunday, 1:30 PM Pacific (game will start at 2 PM)
Streaming: Watch ESPN
Adrien Healey and Taylor Twellman on the call.
Portland Timbers v Seattle Sounders
Sunday, 4:00 PM Pacific
TV: Fox Sports 1
Streaming: Fox Sports Go