Portland, OR – Chivas USA and the Portland Timbers will attempt to get back in the win column on Saturday as the two sides get set to meet at Jeld-Wen Field.
Both teams are coming off of key losses to Western Conference foes as Portland was thrashed 5-0 at FC Dallas while Chivas fell 3-1 to the Los Angeles Galaxy in the Super Clasico.
Separated by just four points in the West, Portland and Chivas are quite familiar adversaries having faced one another on July 18. The Goats were victorious in that affair, grabbing a 1-0 win thanks to Miller Bolanos.
That match marked a third straight shutout for the Chivas defense, but the Goats were dismantled by the Galaxy last time out, conceding multiple goals in a match for just the fourth time this season.
"We have to really take a look at these last two games," defender Danny Califf said, "really in-depth take a look at what we did well against Portland and how we came out, how we played, how we were sharp, how we put them under pressure, how we didn't come out like that against the Galaxy and what changes we need to make going forward."
Paolo Cardozo may have earned himself a place in the starting lineup for Saturday's tilt with the Timbers. After a string of four consecutive league starts, Cardozo began the match against the Galaxy on the bench only score the club's lone goal of the match when he came on as a substitute at halftime.
"Paolo brought us some life in the middle part of the field, in the attacking part of the field, and as a result obviously he scored a goal," Chivas head coach Robin Fraser said. "He was involved in a number of good attacks."
Cardozo could have a field day against a Portland defense that has proven to be quite porous in recent weeks.
Over Portland's current four-game losing streak, the Timbers have conceded 14 goals. They have scored just three.
"Defending as a group, we've changed nothing that we've done as a group in how we defend, yet we're breaking down. Time and time again, we're breaking down," said Timbers interim head coach Gavin Wilkinson. "We included a few new players with fresh legs with the potential to play extremely well and they failed."
Wilkinson has had a rough go of it since taking over for John Spencer, going 0-3-0 and losing by a combined score of 11-3.
"I feel humiliated," Wilkinson said after the loss at FC Dallas. "I feel terrible for the organization. We talk about how great our fan support is. We had a group of fans that traveled tonight, and I apologize to them. And that's me and the organization apologizing. It's important that we readdress the situation."