FRISCO, Texas - The Portland Timbers come to Frisco on Wednesday night playing perhaps as well as they have at any time in their short MLS history.
PTFC brings a franchise-record seven-game unbeaten streak into the midweek clash and while there are certainly a number of reasons why the Pacific Northwest club has turned things around in such short succession, at the top of the list is the shrewd hiring of Caleb Porter.
“I think the team is all buying in,” Schellas Hyndman said about Portland on Monday. “They have a balanced team and [Donovan] Ricketts has made some key saves. They have depth and as the ball is bouncing right for us, the ball is bouncing right for them. They’re extremely hard working and they’re going to be a handful.”
Not only is Wednesday’s game the first time since July 2011 that two MLS teams have taken at least a seven-game unbeaten streak into a match, it’s a meeting between the two highest scoring teams by goals per game in the league.
“I think Portland’s one of those teams like Kansas City last year that just keeps coming at you from a lot of different directions,” said Hyndman. “Ryan Johnson’s a very good goal scorer, then there’s [Diego] Valeri their number ten and outstanding holding midfielders in [Will] Johnson and [Diego] Chara.”
FC Dallas has had plenty of success against Portland, especially in Frisco where they’re 2-0-1 all-time with ten goals scored in those three games. Still, this looks to be a different Portland team than years past and a stiff test awaits on Wednesday night when Hyndman’s men put their perfect 2013 home record on the line.
“It’s a great club and it was a privilege to be a part of their inaugural season,” said Kenny Cooper, a Timber in 2011. “Obviously I wish them well, but I hope that on Wednesday we get the better of them.”