Three big storylines
- Last week in the first of your Three Big Storylines, we talked about how the Vancouver Whitecaps were struggling and had fallen below the Colorado Rapids in the Western Conference table, despite the Rapids’ historically bad start that got their manager fired. Well, since that published, the ‘Caps have gone from bad to worse. They lost at home to the San Jose Earthquakes 3-1 last Saturday, followed by being the first MLS team to lose in the Canadian Championship to a team from the newly created Canadian Premier League when they lost 2-1 in the third round of that competition to Cavalry FC. Also at home. Things are not going well north of the border. The ‘Caps play at Minnesota on Saturday at 5:00 p.m. (ESPN+), maybe a change of scenery will do them good.
- Friday night MLS featured a double header as New York City FC beat Sporting Kansas City 3-1 in the warm up match. The main attraction of the night was LAFC hosting Atlanta United and it did not disappoint. Atlanta took the lead with a very early 2nd minute goal and held on until the half hour mark, then LAFC put four goals past Atlanta United in a stretch of 12 minutes (including celebration time) that saw LAFC go up 4-1 before Atlanta made it interesting with a first half stoppage time goal to staunch the tide. Atlanta scored early in the second half to make it 4-3, but to everyone’s surprise the defenses showed up and LAFC held on for a 4-3 win.
SundaySaturday sees Fox Sports 1 with the only national TV game of the weekend as the Portland Timbers host the LA Galaxy in the last game before the MLS All Star Game (to be played Wednesday evening in Orlando). The Timbers are still below the playoff red line, but this is only their seventh home game of the season compared to 15 away games played. The Galaxy visit on Sunday night starts a stretch of 10 home games over their next 11 matches, including a streak of nine home games in a row.
From a Sounders point of view
Let’s all hope our friends to the north can right the ship and in the process knock off that pesky Minnesota United team.
A return to draw city in our southern Cascadia neighbors might be the best result as the Sounders are likely going be slugging it out for playoff positions with both the Galaxy and Timbers as the season winds down.
National TV listings
Portland Timbers v LA Galaxy
Date/Time: Saturday, 7:30 p.m. PT
TV: Fox Sports 1
Streaming: Fox Sports Go
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This is your Sounder at Heart MLS Week 21 weekend gamethread. Watch with us.