Timbers Match Day: Portland at Dallas
Friday, March 16, 2012
Portland at F.C. Dallas
Kickoff: 5:30 p.m. Saturday at FC Dallas Park in Frisco, Texas.
TV: ROOT Sports (Cable Channel 34/734).
Radio: 750 AM and 940 AM (Spanish).
Records: Timbers 1-0; Dallas 1-0.
Last season: Portland beat Dallas 4-3 at home; Dallas won 4-0 in Texas.
Storyline: After struggling on the road last season (2 wins, 9 losses, 6 ties), the Timbers want to show right away that 2012 will be different. Frisco, Texas is a good starting place. A 4-0 loss there last season was a low point.
Lineup notes: For Portland, Hanyer Mosquera should get his first start at center back now that his transfer from Columbia is finalized. Rookie Andrew Jean-Baptiste started there in Monday’s win over Philadelphia, scoring a goal. Reserve goalkeeper Jake Gleeson is with the New Zealand U-23 national team for Olympic qualifying March 16-24. Dallas will be without forward Brek Shea, who is with the U.S. U-23 national team for Olympic qualifying.
Match notes: Dallas is No. 5 and Portland No. 8 in the weekly MLSsoccer.com power rankings. ... Dallas opened with a 2-1 home win over the New York Red Bulls. Defender Zach Loyd and forward Ricardo Villar scored the goals.
Matchup to watch: Kalif Alhassan vs. the left side of the Dallas defense. Alhassan had a strong opener and was a difference maker in Portland’s win over Philadelphia. Can the second-year pro be as dynamic when he figures to draw plenty of attention from some veteran Dallas defenders?
Follow Paul Danzer all Timbers season on Twitter at www.twitter.com/col_timbers