By DAN KARELL
Wednesday night marks the first of three meetings between Real Salt Lake and the Portland Timbers, two sides who are gunning for a Supporters Shield title.
As the first place team, RSL have had a target on their back for the better part of the last month and it’s showed, winning once in their last five games. However, the Timbers have had some recent struggles as well, with just two wins in their last five. The two clubs met up on August 7 in the U.S. Open Cup semifinals, with RSL coming out on top, 2-1.
After winning eight games in the first three months of the season, FC Dallas have been in a huge tailspin, dropping from first place in the Western Conference all the way to eighth place. Since the end of May, the club haven’t won a single match. But the club have a chance to find that winning feeling when they visit last-place Chivas USA at the StubHub Center.
Here is a rundown of the Wednesday night slate:
PORTLAND TIMBERS vs. REAL SALT LAKE (11pm, MLS Live)
Amazingly, when these two Western Conference powers meet up at Jeld-Wen Field on Wednesday evening, it will be the first of three Major League Soccer meetings between the sides as they fight for the top spot in the conference.
Playoff places are up for grabs in the ultra-competitive Western Conference, but both teams will be missing key pieces in Wednesday’s matchup. The Timbers will be without midfield leader Will Johnson due to a shoulder injury while RSL is without captain Kyle Beckerman due to yellow card accumulation.
CHIVAS USA vs. FC DALLAS (10:30pm, MLS Live)
Chivas USA had an extended break since their last game, having the previous weekend off, but they’ll have to play a new lineup again due to yet another game with red cards to their players.
Midfielder Gabe Farfan and forward Tristan Bowen both were sent off in the 1-1 draw against the Colorado Rapids and earned a two-game suspensions each by MLS. Carlos Bocanegra also misses out due to injury, a huge blow to the club. FC Dallas meanwhile won’t be with the services of Andrew Jacobson while Eric Hassli, Zach Loyd, and Walker Zimmerman are all questionable.