FRISCO - The Portland Timbers, just like FC Dallas, lost 2-1 away on Decision Day and, now, both teams are gearing up for the make-or-break Knockout Round meeting on Wednesday in Frisco.
While FCD traveled back from Colorado on Monday, the Timbers return from a shorter trip this weekend to Vancouver, where almost all of their starters were rested on Sunday. Despite the team's upcoming lengthy trip to Texas, it's a scenario that Timbers goalkeeper Jeff Attinella, sees as an advantage.
“It’s good. We are rested, our guys are rested and they [FC Dallas] just played a tough game in Colorado,” Attinella said. “I think that we got a tie there early in the year. We got a good result against them at home, so I think it’s positive. We are looking forward to the matchup and I am expecting us to do really well.”
“Now we’re going to analyze," Portland head coach Gio Savarese said Sunday. "Now we know who we have. We have to focus on that, concentrate and be ready. FC Dallas is a tough team, but any team that we’re going to face is going to be a difficult game. Now we prepare and we’ll be ready to play.”
With so little time to prepare for Wednesday's match, Dallas holds the edge coming in with home-field advantage, which has been crucial in the Western Conference Knockout Round over the last three seasons. Since the current playoff format started in 2015, no road team in the West has won in the midweek games.
“It’s going to be tough for sure but the playoffs are a different thing,” midfielder Andrés Flores said. “All the effort that we put during the season, now it’s the reward that we’re in the playoffs. Now we have to go down there and try to do our game and try to win it.”