Just in case there needed to be added stakes for the Seattle Sounders’ trip to play the Portland Timbers on Sunday, it was announced that the match would count toward the Cascadia Cup standings. The first meeting between the two teams on May 9 at Providence Park did not count toward the regional rivalry trophy’s standings as it was still being determined if it would be awarded at all after the respective supporters groups put it on hold last year.
While the Sounders and Timbers have been allowing full crowds for a couple of months, the final element clearing the way seems to be the Vancouver Whitecaps returning to play home games in front of fans at BC Place and fans being allowed to travel to Canada. While Canadian fans are not currently permitted to travel to the United States, it’s entirely possible that they will be when the Whitecaps play their two road Cascadia Cup matches in October.
“At long last, the representatives of the Cascadia Cup Council have determined that due to the relaxation of pandemic-related fan restrictions at matches, combined with the opportunity to create a balanced Cup schedule, the Cascadia Cup will have a 2021 champion,” Emerald City Supporters, Timbers Army and Southsiders wrote in a joint statement.
The statement did allow for the possibility that their decision could be reversed if there are “significant changes regarding attendance of supporters.”
The Cascadia Cup was founded by the respective supporters groups in 2004 when all three teams were in the USL, and a variety of methods have been used to determine the winner. In 2009-10, only the Whitecaps and Timbers competed as the Sounders were playing in MLS. In order to balance the competition, only the last home game against each opponent has been counted since 2018, the same format as this year’s competition.
The Sounders are the current Cascadia Cup holders, claiming seven points in the four 2019 games. They are tied with the Whitecaps with six overall titles, but have the most during the MLS era (four).
Cascadia Cup Schedule
- Aug. 15: Seattle @ Portland
- Aug. 29: Portland @ Seattle
- Sept. 10: Portland @ Vancouver
- Oct. 9: Vancouver @ Seattle
- Oct. 20: Vancouver @ Portland
- Nov. 7: Seattle @ Vancouver