Sporting KC v Portland Timbers: Preview, Predictions & How to Watch

Sporting KC vs. Portland Timbers

When: Sunday, August 21, 2022 at 6:30 p.m. CT (kick-off 6:38 – let’s hope this published time on National TV is correct)

Where: Children’s Mercy Park

How to Watch/Stream: FS1 | Fox deported

This is a rematch that both teams need to be prepared for. Portland might underestimate Sporting Kansas City, who remain bottom in the Western Conference and whom they defeated 7-2 in their first game of the season. Sporting KC should have extra motivation to redeem themselves after that embarrassing performance in May.

SKC will come into the game in better shape. Sure, they lost 4-3 to Austin FC last weekend, but they scored three goals after scoring four in the win over LA Galaxy the weekend before. Of those seven goals, four came from new signings Willy Agada and Erik Thommy, who were absent for Kansas City in the previous loss to Portland.

Also, Sporting plays a different style. Instead of throwing everyone forward and leaving themselves open to the counterattack that Portland killed them on last time, they’re the team that gives up more possession and hits teams on the counterattack. It seems like a logical conclusion that if Portland comes to town, they’ll keep it that way.

At this point in the year, it’s not officially over for Sporting KC in terms of playoff hopes. You probably need to lead the table and win all eight games to even stand a chance. That’s almost certainly not going to happen, but I imagine SKC will play like they’re alive until they’re not. The longest preseason in MLS history continues.

Portland’s current form

Prior to last weekend’s loss, Portland had not lost since losing to Inter Miami CF on May 28. That was a 10-game unbeaten streak that ended on the Toronto streets. Lots of draws, but that’s usually better than losing.

What’s new for Portland since the last meeting?

The best place to start for most Portland transactions is our preview of the previous meeting. Since that date, Portland has only completed one transaction.

IN: The team signed defender Juan David Mosquera from Independiente Medellín (Colombia). Mosquera is a 19-year-old right-back who has made 45 professional appearances. He will fill a U-22 squad spot for Portland. He has yet to debut.

OUT: none


Sporty KC

OUT – Alan Pulido (knee surgery), Gadi Kinda (SEI – Knee Surgery), Ozzie Cisneros (paralyze), Kortne Ford (suspension), Tim Melia (hamstring)

QUESTIONABLE – Khiry Shelton (calf), Logan Ndenbe (hamstring), Willy Agada (Hips)

*This is updated based on the official injury report. As of this writing, it’s just last week’s report, plus a guess on Agada. I take it Ndenbe isn’t questionable anymore, but I’ll leave him there until we have something official.


OUT – Diego Gutierrez (foot), Felipe Mora (knee)


Discipline watch for Sporting KC

Next yellow card blocked: Kortne Ford, Roger Espinoza


Sporty KC

Goals: Johnny Russell (7), Daniel Salloi (5), Remi Walter, Willy Agada (3), Roger Espinoza (2), Marinos Tzionis, Felipe Hernandez, Graham Zusi, Erik Thommy, Andreu Fontas (1)

assists: Felipe Hernandez, Cam Duke, Daniel Salloi (3), Roger Espinoza (2), Ben Sweat, Uri Rosell, Remi Walter, Khiry Shelton, Kayden Pierre (1)


Goals: Jaroslaw Niezgoda (9), Dairon Asprilla, Sebastian Blanco, Santiago Moreno (5), Yimmi Chara (4), Nathan Fogaca, Marvin Loria, Cristhian Paredes (2), two with one (1)

assists: Y. Chara (9), Blanco (8), Moreno (7), Erik Williamson (6), Paredes (3), Diego Chara, Loria, Niezgoda (2), two with one (1)

Start XI predictions

This will get its own story. Look for it closer to game day. (Thinking: Do you still want those stories? It’s late in the season and barring a major injury, is it really worth it?)


I think Sporting KC are absolutely capable of winning this game. Their defense has given up six goals in the last two which is pretty terrible but they have scored seven goals. If they can keep scoring, anything is possible. Portland has a pretty leaky defense.

Hopefully we will see Logan Ndenbe return from injury as he was on the bench last weekend despite not playing. His defense will be an improvement over Ben Sweat, who is perhaps the more creative offensive player but has had (at least in part) mental failures on defense that have accounted for possibly four of the last six goals. Now if only Kortne Ford didn’t have three weeks to go on his suspension.

No matter what, we’re hoping the offensive chemistry continues to build and it becomes clearer who should stay and who should leave from this roster.

2-2 draw

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