Seattle, WA – The Cascadia Cup rivalry will be renewed on Saturday when Vancouver Whitecaps FC heads to CenturyLink Field to face Seattle Sounders FC.
Seattle came out on top of the Cascadia Cup table last season, producing two wins and two draws in a total of four games against Vancouver and the Portland Timbers.
But this term has not yielded as much success in the storied rivalry for the Sounders, who have claimed just one point from their two Cascadia Cup matches thus far.
According to Sounders head coach Sigi Schmid, Saturday's Cascadia clash provides his club with an opportunity to move up in the Western Conference table while claiming bragging rights in the process.
"We need to get these points at home. That keeps us in competition for that," Schmid told the club's official website regarding the Cascadia Cup. "Winning the Cascadia Cup, the most important thing about it is I think it puts us a step closer to achieving our playoff goals and achieving our position that we want to finish the season at."
Seattle is coming off of a disappointing 2-1 road loss against the San Jose Earthquakes. The Sounders thought they had earned a point with Fredy Montero's 90th-minute equalizer, but Steven Lenhart struck deep into stoppage time to send the Emerald City club home empty handed.
Vancouver also suffered a debilitating defeat last time out, falling 2-0 at home to FC Dallas.
"It was a disappointing night - a frustrating game for us," said Whitecaps head coach Martin Rennie. "Thankfully, we haven't had many of these games here at BC Place. It's not something we're going to dwell upon. There are some things we can work on and improve upon.
"It was just one of those games that never really got going. It was stop-start all the time and there was never really much rhythm to it. We weren't able to get the ball moving like we would've liked."
Goalkeeper Joe Cannon, who failed to produce a save in the home loss to Dallas, stressed the importance of moving on from the defeat and focusing on Saturday's all-important meeting with Seattle.
"We're all gutted because we understand how important our fans are," Cannon said. "I think this is the second loss we've had all year [at BC Place]. That's one of those performances we're going to like to forget real quickly and fortunately we have a big derby on Saturday."