Our prediction for this MLS match:
Columbus Crew will be aiming to stay in the playoffs berth when they face fellow top-seven chasing Portland Timbers on Sunday. Columbus do not seem to be at their sharpest, with the team winning only one from their last five league fixtures, but this game could be the turning point for Caleb Porter’s troops. The good news for the hosts is that midfielder Luis Mario Diaz is back from suspension.
The Timbers, on the other hand, look unstoppable at the moment, with the team winning each of their last four league matches. Portland are high on confidence ahead of Sunday’s clash, but given Columbus’ four-game unbeaten run at home, we believe that there is a big value in betting on draw. Defender Zac McGraw is banned for the visiting side, while all Rasmussen, Bodily, Mora, and Gutierrez are out of contention with injuries.
Highlighted Player (Dario Zuparic):
Dario Zuparic is a Croatian footballer, who plays for Pescara as a defender. Zuparic played for the likes of Sladograna Zupanja, NK Granicar Zupanja and Cibalia during his youth career. He continued playing for Cibalia at senior level and he made 57 league appearances for the Croatian outfit from 2011 to 2013.
In 2013 he signed a contract with Pescara and made 21 appearances for the team in the 2013/2014 Serie B campaign. Zuparic quickly established himself as a first-team regular at Pescara and it has to be noted that he played 36 games for the Delfini in the 2015/2016 season. The Pescara highly rated defender was born in Croatia, but he started playing for Bosnia and Herzegovina.
He has 3 caps for Bosnian and Herzegovina U19 team, but he eventually decided to represent Croatia on the international stage. Zuparic has 5 caps for Croatia U20 and he played three matches for Croatia U21. The 188-cm-tall footballer was born on 3 May, 1992 in Zupanja.
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.