Portland Timbers

Is there a connection between Cascadia Cup and MLS Growth?

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Is there a connection between Cascadia Cup and MLS Growth?

Written by Lance McDonald 

Major League Soccer has been around for nearly two decades and has seen its fair share of ups and downs. At one of its lowest points, the league had lost $250 million and had to fold two franchises to keep their sinking ship afloat.

Today we see a very different atmosphere and culture. Things are going great for MLS which is seeing the highest average attendance in its history so far in 2015 and is currently sitting at 20 clubs with four on the way.

But what, or who, can be attributed with bringing about this turnaround? The truth is that there are a lot of factors that have ushered in the relative golden age of Major League Soccer, but there is one thing, or a few groups, that should be given at least a nod for their contribution to the success of the league.

It all started back in 2009 when the first member of the Cascadia rivalry entered MLS with a bang. Immediately, Seattle showed their worth to a league that was on the rise but still struggling. Since their debut, the Sounders have maintained the highest average attendance in the league and have increased their own records every year up until 2014, where they dropped by about 300 average spectators.

Seattle showed the country what soccer could look like in the states; selling 50,000+ tickets to multiple games a season was unheard of in the US’s domestic league, but the Sounders have shown it can be done.

Unfortunately, the full impact of the Sounders contribution to the league could not be realized until 2011, when the Cascadia rivalry was brought back to its fullness and into major competition for the first time.

The Seattle Sounders, Portland Timbers and Vancouver Whitecaps have all been around since the 1970’s when they played in the North American Soccer League (NASL). The short flame that was the NASL started the rivalry that would later be known as the Cascadia Cup.

After the demise of the league in 1984, all three cities eventually brought soccer back in some capacity. By 2004, the rivals had been competing against each other in the A-league for 3 seasons and decided to establish a points system to declare an official winner and a trophy for the victor.

The rivalry grew in popularity until 2009 when the Sounders left for MLS. The Timbers and Whitecaps continued to declare a winner between the two of them for the next two seasons but the competition just wasn’t the same.

Meanwhile, Seattle had been setting records in MLS for their first two season but when the Cascadia Cup came to the league, it took things to a new level. In their first meeting in MLS, Portland visited Seattle in a draw that brought a modest 36,000+ fans to the park.

It was over a year later that the two sides would meet in Seattle again, where they attracted the second largest crowd in MLS history, at the time, with more than 66,000 fans. Almost a year later they would set a new second place record with 67,385 fans packing CenturyLink Field.

The only game that tops this one in attendance was set in the first year of MLS, when 69,225 fans filled the Rose Bowl for a matchup between the LA Galaxy and the NY Metro Stars.

The rivalry between Portland and Seattle is easily the most heated and passionate in Major League Soccer. Seattle brings in the most fans with a stadium that far outreaches the capacity of Providence Park, however many in Portland and even beyond claim that the atmosphere and passion is far more authentic in the Rose City, a town that claims to beSoccer City USA.

When you consider what Seattle has to work with, it is easy to see why they produce the attendance results they do. However, Portland and Vancouver both make a great showing especially when considering their market size. The Timbers and Whitecaps come in at number 4 and 5 for average attendance behind Seattle, Toronto and LA. And they aren’t far behind LA or Toronto.

For all the tension found in the Cascadia rivalry, there is something that, I believe, brings these clubs together in fellowship; the knowledge that their contribution to US soccer is unrivaled, and the envy of the MLS. For that, we should all give each other a silent, brief and virtually unnoticeable pat on the back during the intermission of some future game.

Cascadia represents what we all want to see from Major League Soccer. When outsiders see that passion and love of the game, they see a league that deserves more respect, and respect is not easily gained from global enthusiasts.

The simple truth is that since 2011, MLS has grown greatly in popularity and reputation and the rivalry that most point to as the model for current and future growth is found in the Great Northwest.

How are Sounders and Timbers players doing in the World Cup?

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USA Today Images

How are Sounders and Timbers players doing in the World Cup?

BY TIM KEARNY

Seattle Sounders

Gustav Svensson – Sweden

Svensson is a versatile defender for the Sounders who has lined up all over the back line of the pitch. He uses his brain as much as his brawn to track attackers and go after the ball. Svensson also seems to only score big goals for the Sounders, he had one to send them back to the MLS Cup last year and another momentous shot from distance in a game earlier this year. He has a handful of appearances for the Swedish national team at the tender age of 31, but got the call for this year’s World Cup. The Swedes are at their first World Cup since 2006 and are without Zlatan Ibrahimović. Svensson is not the goal scorer that Zlatan was but he will be expected to find open teammates and link up well with the defense. They won their opener this year 1-0 against South Korea. Then were stunned by Germany with a stoppage time goal off a free kick 2-1. This put extra pressure on the Swedes to win against Mexico, which they did in resounding fashion 3-0. The win, coupled with Germany’s loss to South Korea means Sweden goes through to the knockout round.

Roman Torres – Panama

Torres is the heaviest player at this year’s World Cup weighing in at almost 200 pounds, and he is trying to throw his weight around to get Panama into the knockout stage. This is Panama’s first ever appearance in the World Cup and they do not want it to end early. They lost to Belgium in their first match 3-0. It was closer than the score looks though. Panama did nothing to inspire confidence in their next match against England losing 6-1. The one goal was the first Panama has scored in a World Cup. They wrapped up the group stage with another loss, this one 2-1 to Tunisia, and the goal for Panama was an own goal. This is a new chapter for Panamanian soccer now that they have qualified for a World Cup, but they are heading home nonetheless.

Torres is something of a cult figure in Panamanian soccer circles right now, because of his size and the passion with which he plays. Torres has made more than 100 appearances for Panama since his debut in the 2005 Gold Cup. He also was named to CONCACAF’s best XI for 2017, which is icing on the cake for Torres who also scored the goal that sent Panama to the World Cup this year. He is a big central defender who can make plays on the ball in the air.

Portland Timbers

David Guzman – Costa Rica

Guzman is one of the more technically skilled players on the Timbers and he is bringing that to a surprising Costa Rican squad. They aren’t ranked very high according to FIFA’s world ranking coming in at 23rd, but they usually play good defense and have a good counter attack. Guzman is an orchestrater from his midfield spot and is more about setting people up and playing good defense than creating scoring chances himself.

He is 28 years old and has 46 caps with the national team starting in 2010. Guzman is likely trying to forget his last game against Serbia. He made a foul that set up the winning free kick in the 56th minute and could not come back after that. They came up short against Serbia 1-0 in their first match, and failed to score against Brazil in their second game as well, losing 2-0. They were not going to advance with a good showing against Switzerland in their last game, but they gave as good as they got in the 2-2 draw before they head home and start thinking about next time.

Andy Polo – Peru

Polo has already been eliminated from reaching the next round. They did not get a goal against France or Denmark in their first games, losing 1-0. And beating Australia 2-0 was simply a moral victory for the Peruvian side. Nonetheless, Polo is an athletic winger who uses his speed and acceleration to create scoring chances. He can play a few different positions up front for the Timbers and for the national team to pressure the defense.

It’s time to show some love for the Portland Timbers 2 squad

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Timbers 2

It’s time to show some love for the Portland Timbers 2 squad

BY EDDY PRUGH

The Portland Timbers are looking like a winning franchise from top to bottom this season. It’s time to show some love to the (so far) highly successful Timbers 2 of the United Soccer League. The USL is the equivalent to the NBA G League or Triple-A baseball. It’s the second tier of American (and Canadian) soccer. The league is divided into East and West conferences and currently has 33 teams in total.

USL teams are commonly affiliated with an MLS parent club, the same as they are in the baseball and basketball leagues mentioned above. A USL team can be a useful resource for an MLS team for many reasons. Players from the first team (the MLS team) can play in USL games when they are coming back from an injury or if they simply need to get more game time for whatever reason. Most American players in the MLS have, at some point, played in the USL.

A lot of MLS franchises use their USL team strictly as a developmental platform for young players who have come through the ranks of the youth system but who aren’t ready to make the jump to the MLS team. In the past few seasons, Timbers 2 has tried to combine young players who show potential with senior players from the MLS team to find success but it hasn’t worked very well until now.

Just like the first team, the first and probably most important difference in the Timbers 2’ 2018 season is that there is a new coach at the helm. New Zealand native Cameron Knowles has been an assistant for the Timbers since 2012 and has been involved with the USL team since its inception in 2014, but only took the head coaching reigns for the first time this season.

Next, the team has gone out and signed several older players who bring professional experience from elsewhere. Even if they may not be considered as prospects for the first team they have experience and confidence that rubs off on the younger players.

After 13 games, Timbers 2 sit 4th in the Western Conference. In first place is Real Monarchs, who are the USL affiliate of Real Salt Lake. In 2nd and 3rd are Phoenix and Sacramento respectively; both teams are independent from MLS clubs. Timbers 2 team has consistently mixed in first-team players like Vytautas Andriuškevičius, Dairon Asprilla and Bill Tuiloma to compliment off-season signings Josh Phillips and Jimmy Mulligan. Then they add homegrown players 2018 draft picks Eryk Williamson and Foster Langsdorf to the mix. With such a large pool of players to choose from, the lineups have changed on a game-to-game basis but it hasn’t seemed to break any rhythm.

Leading the team with six goals is Foster Langsdorf who is coming off an amazing college career at Stanford that included back-to-back-to-back National Championships as well is becoming the all-time leading goal scorer in PAC-12 competition. Second in goals is a tie between 20-year-old Augustine Williams and 21-year-old Victor Arboleda, both with four.

Timbers 2 game days at Providence Park are obviously vastly less populated than for MLS games, but the team is making the Timbers organization and the rest of Portland proud, or at least they should be. Winning should be universal for the whole club and Timbers 2 aren’t disappointing.

Timbers hot play and recent injuries, Jamie Goldberg has the latest

Timbers hot play and recent injuries, Jamie Goldberg has the latest

The Portland Timbers defense has been a major key in helping boost the Timbers to extend their winning streak to five games.  This current streak is now the club’s most consecutive victories since 2011 when the Timbers joined the MLS.

And, the Timbers have been coming up big in the clutch. Saturday’s victory over Los Angeles FC was the third consecutive game that Portland scored the game-winning-goal in the final 10 minutes of play.

On Tuesday, Timbers and Thorns reporter for The Oregonian Jamie Goldberg reported that Timbers defender Liam Ridgewell has suffered a right quad injury and will miss at least the next two games.

Ridgewell left Saturday's match against LAFC after injuring his quad just six minutes into the game.

Jamie also joined Serena Winters on The Bridge Tuesday night with much more on the Timbers recent hot play. Watch the video above on how things have turned around for the Timbers and find more of the Goldberg interview under the “Video” tab at the top of the page.

Samuel Armenteros has made an impact for the Portland Timbers

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USA Today Images

Samuel Armenteros has made an impact for the Portland Timbers

BY EILEEN HEILMAN

Can we forget about Zlatan for a moment and talk about another Swede who came stateside for the 2018/19 MLS season? All the talk has been about the big man in Los Angeles—and rightly so. Of all the stars that have come to the league, he is perhaps the most decorated and exciting of them all.

He joins an impressive cell of Swedish players in the league. The relationship between the highest Swedish league, the Allsvenskan, and the MLS has seemed to grow stronger in recent seasons. Countless players of many nationalities have played in the Allsvenskan before coming to Major League Soccer as the style of play seems to translate well, and the road goes both ways several Americans playing in Sweden.

Known for their intelligence and sound technical abilities, Swedish players have started popping up on quite a few rosters throughout the league. There are eight players on six different teams to be exact, and one of them has landed in Portland. Although he hasn’t showcased his abilities to the fullest just yet…it may just be a matter of time.

Samuel Armenteros. Having arrived on loan from Italian side Benevento Calcio during the off-season, he made an instant splash in the Portland Timbers preseason in Tucson, scoring four goals in the Mobile Mini Sun Cup and finishing top scorer of the tournament. So far, he’s had a tough time getting regular playing time, starting two games and appearing in eight (of nine) thus far. With the Timbers playing with one spearheading striker, it was always going to be difficult to dislodge Fanendo Adi from the starting lineup.

Armenteros is more a more mobile striker than the 6’4” Adi but he isn’t as strong with his back to the goal, as few players in the league are. After Liam Ridgewell, Armenteros is arguably the most experienced player on the Timbers, having played in the top leagues of The Netherlands, Belgium, Azerbaijan and Italy and has an impressive goal-scoring record almost everywhere he’s been. Internationally, he has two appearances for Sweden and has scored once.

As a player, he is a complete striker. He combines strength, pace, technical ability, a powerful left-foot and most importantly, the one thing that can’t be taught: a goal-scorers instinct. He knows where to be before the ball does.

It seems like somewhat of a coup to capture a player with such a pedigree. Players with resumes like his are more often than not Designated Players. We got a glimpse of his capabilities this past weekend when he came off the bench and had a fantastic assist for Sebastian Blanco’s 86th minute goal, winning the ball high up the field before sliding a direct pass through traffic right into the path of the Argentinean.

It’s not uncommon for players to take a little time to adapt to new surroundings and teammates and a player should never be judged on how they perform in their first few appearances. Of course we don’t hope that an injury to another player brings him more playing time, but he is a class player to have sitting on the bench. More playing time will build confidence and as soon as he gets his first goal, the floodgates might just burst open.

Timbers vs. Sounders rivalry: Happy 100th meeting

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USA Today Images

Timbers vs. Sounders rivalry: Happy 100th meeting

It is Week 11 in the 2018 MLS regular season and for Portland Timbers fans it means it is time to celebrate a milestone as Portland hosts the Seattle Sounders this weekend.

Sunday marks the 100th meeting between the Timbers and the Sounders.  Soccer fans around the country realize that this MLS rivalry between these two clubs is one of, if not the biggest, in MLS history.

The Sounders hold the series lead with an all-time record of 50-35-14 that dates back to their very first meeting in May of 1975. In Major League Soccer play, Seattle has won nine matches, while Portland has won five, and there have been a total of six draws. But of course, Timbers' fans can brag about Portland having won both meetings in the MLS Cup Playoffs.

In the last meeting between these two at Providence Park in June of 2017 it was a 2-2 draw.

This will be Timbers' head coach Giovanni Savarese first game against the Sounders as head coach in Portland. 

And of course, you can always expect some of the very best TIFOs when these two get together at Providence Park! Just look at this one from July of 2016.

MLS.com’s Timbers Injury Report: OUT: D - Roy Miller (left Achilles tendon), F - Jeremy Ebobisse (right thigh); QUESTIONABLE: M - David Guzman (right knee), D - Vytas (right thigh), D - Bill Tuiloma (right knee).

MLS.com’s Sounders Injury Report: OUT: F - Jordan Morris (torn ACL), M - Harry Shipp (right ankle sprain); QUESTIONABLE: D - Roman Torres (right hamstring strain), D - Waylon Francis (right hamstring strain), M - Victor Rodriguez (right knee sprain), M - Nicolas Lodeiro (foot)

And, to make sure Timbers' fans are extremely pumped for this 100th meeting, the Timbers Facebook takes you through history of Portland vs. Seattle, well kind of, you’ll see…

“There’s no re-writing history.”

Decades of conflict: The Rivalry hits 100. #PDXSEA100 #RCTID

The Rivalry hits 100

“There’s no re-writing history.” Decades of conflict: The Rivalry hits 100. #PDXSEA100 #RCTID

Posted by Portland Timbers on Tuesday, May 8, 2018

Darlington Nagbe is missed already for the Portland Timbers

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USA Today

Darlington Nagbe is missed already for the Portland Timbers

By 

The 2018 MLS season is underway! Well, I’ve missed the punch a bit I guess. The season has been underway for almost 2 months but it feels like less since the Portland Timbers only just played their first home game a week ago. The first kick of the 2018 season brought with it some big changes to the Timbers organization. In fact it wouldn’t be a stretch to say that it was the dawning of a new era. After all, there was a new coach patrolling the touchline.

At the end of the 2017 season, head coach Caleb Porter’s abrupt announcement that he would be stepping down as head coach sent waves of surprise that bordered on shock rippling through the soccer world. He was at the helm for five seasons and although Scottish coach John Spencer preceded him, Porter is the man who will be remembered as the original commander-in-chief of the MLS-era Timbers. But while Porter might have instilled the confidence and tactics to win an MLS Cup in 2015, it was another member of the organization who better embodied the spirit of the club.

Darlington Nagbe.

This offseason, Timbers fans watched sadly as the soft-spoken talisman waved goodbye to his first professional club and signed for expansion side Atlanta United.

Nagbe was the Timbers’ first-ever SuperDraft pick way back in 2011. Even players who reach grand levels of success in college can have trouble adapting to the MLS, but not Nagbe. After winning the Mac Hermann Trophy (the Heisman Trophy of college soccer) in 2010 at the University of Akron—where, incidentally, Caleb Porter was head coach at the time—he transitioned seamlessly to the professional game and started 21 games in his rookie season. His confidence would only grow as Porter took the reigns of the franchise in 2013.

For the next five years, Nagbe would develop into a special player, setting the bar higher and higher for himself each season. In his head-down, straight-to-business way, he developed a reputation around the league for being grossly underrated. The recognition that he deserved would come eventually. After he became a U.S. citizen in 2015 he began representing the United States National Team on a regular basis and in 2016 he was selected as an MLS All-Star.

Nagbe was the ultimate utility player; so diverse and intelligent that even after seven seasons watching him play for the Timbers, it’s still difficult to determine where on the field he is most effective. He was comfortable drifting onto the wing and running at defenders, dropping deep in midfield and initiating the attack, buzzing around underneath the striker or even spearheading the offense as a lone striker.

He scored 27 goals and notched 30 assists in Timbers colors but it was what he did away from the ball that made him so valuable. While so many players these days throw their hands in the air when they don’t get the ball in the exact way that they want, Nagbe was the exact opposite. He never shied away from doing the dirty work, the selfless and often un-praised running that was so important in creating the space less mobile creative players to work their magic, a true team-before-self player.

As a testament to his character, it should be noted that Nagbe was a two-time MLS Fair Play Award winner: an honor awarded to the player who stands out for displaying exceptional sportsmanlike behavior throughout the season while also committing a small number of fouls. This award might seem as though it is all about character and not about soccer ability but that’s not the case. When he won the award in 2013 and 2015, he committed a total of 8 and 11 fouls respectively. From this statistic we can draw the conclusion that he was incredibly disciplined and hard working defensively because he was so rarely caught in a bad position where was forced to commit a foul.

His goals were worth the price of admission. He was never a volume goal scorer but the goals that he did score were usually something special. Our jaws hit the floor when he scored his first. In a game against Sporting Kansas City in what was then Jeld-Wen Field. He gathered a clearance out of mid-air, juggling it twice before volleying it viciously into the top corner. It won 2011 MLS Goal of the Year and remains the greatest goal ever scored at Providence Park by a long way.

In the young history of the Portland Timbers, Darlington Nagbe has cemented his status as a Portland hero. After his departure, there only remains goalkeeper Jake Gleeson and unsung midfield engine Diego Chará who were members of the original MLS Timbers roster from 2011.

Atlanta United won’t make the trip to Portland during the 2018 season, but one day Darlington Nagbe will return to Portland in colors other than green and gold. So when that day comes, sing his name in the stands of Providence Park and remember all that he gave us, the Timbers’ first true legend.

The Portland Timbers’ Place In The Wild, Wild West

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The Portland Timbers’ Place In The Wild, Wild West

BY 

Coming into the weekend, the Portland Timbers were looking to clinch one of the six Western Conference playoff spots against visiting DC United. DC is the worst team in the Eastern Conference by a pretty fair margin, and are the second worst team in MLS only by a tie breaker with the LA Galaxy. DC hasn’t been in the playoff hunt in months. A match against a non-conference team with nothing to play for has the markings of dangerous all over it, but the Timbers proved why they are still within reach of the top spot in the West as the season nears its end.

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There was plenty at stake for the Timbers, namely home field advantage in the playoffs, and a chance for a bye rather than a first round knockout game. The Timbers came to play, led, as usual, by midfielder Diego Valeri. Valeri entered the afternoon two goals back of Chicago’s Nemanja Nikolic in the race for the Golden Boot. Valeri picked up a penalty kick goal in first half stoppage time; however, Nikolic was already well on his way to earning himself a hat trick against Philadelphia, taking his season goal tally to 24 by the end of the day. With only one regular season match left, it would take a miracle for Valeri or anyone else to catch him.

Valeri is still in the race for the Landon Donovan MVP award, and here’s why I believe he should win it: Against DC, not only did Valeri strike from the penalty spot, but he also had two assists. He now has 21 goals and 11 assists on the season. The only top scorer in the league that comes close to Valeri’s assists total is last season’s MVP, NYCFC’s David Villa, who currently has 20 goals and 9 assists. Not only that, but Valeri leads the league in game-winning goals with 7. He’s a helluva a defender, too, and to accomplish all of that from the unflashy confines of midfield… c’mon. Without Valeri putting in the season he has (especially with Fanendo Adi out for as long as he has been) Portland has no chance to be fighting for the top spot in the West on the final day of the season.

On this day, Portland dismantled DC in Providence Park, giving the home crowd plenty to cheer about in a 4-0 route. Valeri opened the scoring with his pk, then Alvas Powell got the second half off to a great start with a stunning goal in the 50th minute. Ten minutes later, Sebastián Blanco scored an even more stunning goal from nearly the exact same spot as Powell’s golazo, then capped the game with a ridiculous, patience solo effort with only minutes to go. The victory put the Timbers in second place, with a shot at first next weekend against rivals Vancouver Whitecaps.

Meanwhile in Cascadia, the Seattle Sounders handled FC Dallas in much the same way that the Timbers handled DC, defeating their visitors by the same 4-0 margin. Both teams now have 50 points on the year, two back of first place Vancouver. It is important to note that Portland holds the tie breaker (more wins) over Seattle if the two teams end the season on the same point total after next week’s games.

Vancouver had already clinched a playoff berth before this weekend. Now Portland and Seattle have locked themselves into the postseason along with Kansas City and Houston. San Jose, Salt Lake City and Dallas are all eyeing the West’s final playoff spot on Decision Day.

Portland will be fighting for the top seed in the Western Conference Sunday, October 22, but it will be no easy task. They will have to face first place Vancouver, while Seattle hosts the conference bottom-dwellers, the Colorado Rapids—who, by the way, have only won a single match on the road this season. Vancouver, Portland, Seattle and Kansas City all have a shot at the top spot in the West, but if Portland wins, the top seed is theirs. With a loss on Decision Day, they could finish the season as low as fourth. A draw against Vancouver keeps the Whitecaps on top and allows the Sounders a chance to capture the second seed with a victory against Colorado.

Think that’s a lot of Vancouver/Seattle talk? There’s more. Not only will this game determine the final seeding in the West, it also represents the decisive match in the annual Cascadia Cup. A victory would earn Portland the coveted hardware, while a draw or loss would put the Cup in the hands of rival Seattle.

Portland Timbers acquire central defender Larrys Mabiala

Portland Timbers acquire central defender Larrys Mabiala

PORTLAND, Ore. – The Portland Timbers today announced that the club has signed central defender Larrys Mabiala, utilizing Targeted Allocation Money. Mabiala is scheduled to join the Timbers roster during Major League Soccer’s summer transfer window in July, pending receipt of his International Transfer Certificate (ITC).

“We are pleased to acquire a player of Larrys’ quality and experience, and we are excited that he has chosen to join the Portland Timbers,” said Gavin Wilkinson, general manager and president of soccer for the Timbers. “This has been a positional need since losing Gbenga Arokoyo to an injury and while it took longer than we would have liked, we are delighted to add a proven central defender with the right profile to help the team. We are pleased to welcome Larrys to Portland and look forward to his contributions to the club.”

Mabiala, 29, joins Portland with 201 professional appearances since making his debut in France’s Ligue 1 with Paris Saint-Germain in 2007. A native of Montfermeil, France, Mabiala comes to Portland after spending the past six seasons in the Turkish Super League with first-division clubs Karabükspor and Kayserispor, making 162 appearances (160 starts) in Turkey’s top flight. Additionally, Mabiala has made a combined eight appearances (5 starts) in the UEFA Europa League with Paris Saint-Germain and Karabükspor.

“Larrys Mabiala is a player that will bring a strong, physical presence to our team,” said Caleb Porter, head coach of the Timbers. “His experience and leadership will be key and we expect him to make an immediate impact once he is fully transitioned.”

After spending his first two professional seasons with Paris Saint-Germain (2007-2009), Mabiala signed with OGC Nice ahead of the 2009-2010 Ligue 1 campaign. In three seasons (2009-2012) with Nice, Mabiala made 36 league appearances (36 starts), before transferring to Karabükspor in Turkey. 

While playing with Karabükspor from 2011-2015, Mabiala made 104 league appearances (104 starts), while also featuring four times (4 starts) in the UEFA Europa League. Most recently, Mabiala spent two seasons (2015-2017) with Kayserispor in the Turkish first division, compiling 58 appearances (56 starts) in league play. 

At the international level, Mabiala has made nine appearances (9 starts) for the Democratic Republic of the Congo National Team, starting in six 2010 FIFA World Cup qualifying matches, while also making two appearances (2 starts) in the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations and a friendly appearance in 2008.         

Transaction: Portland Timbers sign defender Larrys Mabiala on June 26, 2017.

Larrys Mabiala
Pronunciation: mah-bee-ah-lah 
Position: Defender
Height: 6-2
Weight: 185
Born: Oct. 8, 1987, in Montfermeil, France
Last Club: Kayserispor
College: n/a
Citizenship: Democratic Republic of the Congo
Acquired: Signed on June 26, 2017

Timbers draw Sounders 2-2 in Cascadia rivalry match

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USA Today Sports Images

Timbers draw Sounders 2-2 in Cascadia rivalry match

PORTLAND, Ore. – The Portland Timbers drew 2-2 with Seattle Sounders FC Sunday evening at Providence Park in front of a sellout crowd of 21,144. Portland forward Fanendo Adi scored his 50th career goal for the Timbers with a penalty while midfielder Dairon Asprilla headed in a goal late in the first half.

Match Moments

11' - CHANCE (POR) - Following a strong defensive stop on a Seattle free kick in the Portland end, the Timbers came out on a blistering counter attack. Midfielder Diego Chara fed forward Adi in the box and his close range effort was kicked aside by Seattle goalkeeper Stefan Frei.

18' - STOP (POR) - Seattle's Brad Evans dribbled to the Portland end line before crossing it back to forward Jordan Morris near the top of the six yard box. But defender Alvas Powell provided a a timely interception to kick the ball free. Powell adeptly then headed away a follow-up shot.

27' - GOAL (SEA) - Seattle's Joevin Jones dribbled in from the left hand side and shot a low drive on frame that Portland goalkeeper Jake Gleeson initially made a strong save on. However, Jones then collected his own rebound and scored. Seattle led 1-0.

36' - CHANCE (POR) - Portland kept up the pressure and after working the ball around the edge of the area, Chara lofted in a cross towards the left post that Asprilla leapt high to head off the top of the cross bar.

44' and 45' - RED CARD (SEA) and GOAL (POR) - Following some strong play in the Seattle box, midfielder Darlington Nagbe found himself with the ball at his feet in front of goal. Seattle's Evans tried to stop him but ended up tangling legs and pulling him down. Referee Ricardo Salazar immediately pointed to the spot for a penalty kick and gave Evans a straight red card for the foul leaving Seattle at 10 men for the remainder of the match. Portland striker Fanendo Adi stepped to the spot and converted with authority past Frei to tie the game at 1-1. It was also Adi's team-leading 50th career goal for Portland.

45+4' - GOAL (POR) - Following an errant back pass from the Seattle defense that resulted in a corner kick for Portland, Asprilla scored with a spectacular header via David Guzmán's pinpoint service. Timbers led 2-1 heading into the half.

68' - CHANCE (POR) - On a botched Seattle throw-in back to keeper Frei, defender Román Torres casually went to retrieve it. Portland's Diego Valeri alertly pounced on the ball and nearly scored but the ball went just wide of the right post.

73' - SAVE (POR) - Seattle's Nicolás Lodeiro teed a up a knuckling shot from distance that Gleeson got low to parry away. The Portland goalkeeper then caught the ensuing corner.

90+4' - GOAL (POR) - In a last chance run, Seattle's Torres crossed a ball into the area that Sounders forward Clint Dempsey headed past Gleeson to tie the game at 2-2.

The Portland Timbers return to the road next Saturday to play Sporting Kansas City at Children's Mercy Park on July 1