Our prediction for this MLS match:
Atlanta United will be looking to build on a 2-0 win over Columbus Crew when they take on Portland Timbers at Mercedes-Benz Stadium on Sunday. The Five Stripes have been impressive at the start of the season and a win over Portland will see them cement top position in the Eastern Conference. Atlanta United are without top scorer Josef Martinez, who represents Colombia at the 2018 FIFA World Cup finals, but regardless of which players will be deployed in the starting line-up, home win should be considered. The Timbers have been having their ups and downs at the start of the season and despite the fact that they recorded back-to-back wins over San Jose Earthquakes and Colorado Rapids in previous two league fixtures, we are tempted to put our money on the Five Stripes, who have been in a splendid form of late.
Highlighted Player (Josef Martinez):
Josef Martinez started his senior career at Caracas, but he made no more than 36 league appearances for the Venezuelan outfit from 2010 to 2012. Martinez then moved to Europe and the 170-cm tall striker scored 4 goals in 34 appearances for the capital club. In the 2013/2014 season he played for fellow Swiss outfit Thun (on loan) and on June 7, 2014 he signed a contract with Serie A team Torino.
In December, 2017 Josef Martinez scored his first ever goal in the Italian top flight in a 2-2 draw with Palermo. The Venezuela international currently plays (on loan) for Atlanta United in MLS and he made his debut for Gerardo Martino’s team against New York Red Bulls. Speaking of his international career, Martinez made his Venezuela debut against El Salvador, coming from the bench after 76 minutes.
On November 10, 2016 he scored a hat-trick for La Vinotinto in a thrilling 5-0 victory over Bolivia and it has to be noted that he has four caps (two goals) for Venezuela U20 team.
Highlighted Team (Portland Timbers):
Founded in 2009, Portland Timbers is a soccer club based in Portland, Oregon. The Timbers are well known for their green kit and their secondary colours are red and black. Portland welcome their opponents at Providence Park and the capacity of their home ground is 21.144.
The club hold a long-running rivalry with Seattle Sounders as the two clubs used to face each other in the North American Soccer League. In 2015 Portland Timbers did remarkably well to win the MLS Cup and that is considered the club’s biggest success.
The Timbers defeated Columbus Crew in the final of the tournament and it has to be noted that the title game was hosted by Mapfre Stadium (Columbus).
Former Premier League footballer Liam Ridgewell played for Portland in the 2015 MLS Cup final against Columbus Crew. Speaking of the club’s supporters, you should have in mind that the Timbers sold out almost every home game in the MLS. Portland’s main supporters group is the Timbers Army.