Timbers MatchDay: vs. FC Dallas

By Paul Danzer, Columbian community sports reporter



FC Dallas at Timbers

Kickoff: 2 p.m. at Jeld-Wen Field.

TV/radio: ESPN / AM 750.

Tickets: The match is sold out.

Where they stand: FC Dallas (8-2-4, 28 points) has the best record in MLS. The Timbers (5-1-8, 23 points) are third in the Western Conference behind Dallas and Real Salt Lake.

Head to head: In MLS, Portland has one win, three draws and two losses in six matches against Dallas. On May 8 in Frisco, Texas, the teams played to a 1-1 draw. Dallas also visits Portland on Aug. 17.

Timbers' tale: The Timbers are on a 12-match MLS unbeaten streak (14 counting two U.S. Open Cup wins). Midfielder Rodney Wallace is still away with Costa Rica's national team, but goalkeeper Donovan Ricketts and forward Ryan Johnson have returned from international duty. Portland's 24 goals leads MLS, as does its per-match average of 1.71. The Timbers have allowed 16 goals, giving them a goal differential of eight that ties Real Salt Lake for the best in MLS.

FC Dallas story: Blas Perez, who leads Dallas with five goals, is away on international duty. This is the first time former Timber Kenny Cooper has played a counting match in Portland since he was traded away to New York following the 2011 season. Cooper leads FCD in shots on goal (14). Cooper has three goals in league play, including the tying penalty kick in the May match between Portland and Dallas. He scored twice on Wednesday to help Dallas beat Houston in a U.S. Open Cup match. Midfield playmakers David Ferreira and Michel each have four assists.

Caleb Porter on Dallas: "They've been built the right way to win games in MLS." The Timbers coach listed individual skill, team chemistry and confidence, and set-piece efficiency as reasons for Dallas' success.