PORTLAND – The Portland Timbers and the Seattle Sounders face off Sunday in what is sure to be a classic match in one of MLS’s most storied rivalries.
A win for Portland on Seattle’s home pitch would not only propel the Timbers forward in the Cascadia Cup rankings, it would also reaffirm the signing of midfielder Diego Valeri, who already has 3 assists and a goal since his contract was purchased from Argentine club Lanus on Aug. 6.
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While Timbers fans are proud of their standout midfielder, all eyes will certainly be on the Sounders' newest acquisition, Clint Dempsey.
A franchise-record 67,000 fans are expected to pack into CenturyLink Field to see Dempsey’s home debut match, and even the most ardent Timbers fans have to be excited to see one of American soccer’s greatest talents compete in the Northwest.
Dempsey, the native Texan and captain of the U.S. national team established himself as a legit soccer talent in the English Premier League.
For six years, Dempsey stood out as a top player for west London club Fulham before transferring last season to Tottenham Hotspur.
Sunday’s nationally-televised game starts at 7 p.m. and will air on ESPN2.
“I can’t even imagine what it’s going to be like when the whole stadium is completely packed and they are behind us,” Dempsey told MLSsoccer.com.
Sunday’s game is another mile marker in soccer’s meteoric rise from relative obscurity in the United Sates and nowhere else can the sport’s popularity be appreciated than in the Northwest.
The MLS even posted “14 Reasons Why It’s A Great Time To Be A Soccer Fan In The U.S.” on Buzzfeed, which prominently features the Timbers, the Sounders and Clint Dempsey.
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