Sounders Insider

Bulletin board material grows as derby nears

Happy Sounders-Timbers Eve, as we're counting down the hours until 8 p.m. Saturday when the Sounders and Timbers meet at Qwest Field in a derby the likes of which MLS has never known.

But that still leaves plenty of time for the sides to fill up their bulletin boards, as media coverage looking at the rivalry pours in from around the country.

A quick Friday morning sampling.

Here's my story from the TNT this morning, looking at possible little nudges thrown by Portland coach John Spencer.

Key fighting words: “We know it’s a big game – the players know that,” Spencer said in a conference call with reporters who cover the Sounders. “The history behind the game excites the players, it excites the staff, and I’m pretty sure it’s probably going to be the best – the second best – atmosphere in the country, second to Jeld-Wen Field, when the game kicks off.”

Here's an appropriately snarky piece by John Canzano of the Oregonian.

Key fighting words: It's been said that Seattle hates Portland. Probably for having better restaurants and more sunny days. Also, for having an NBA team. Also, for less traffic. Also, because Portland has smarter, more attractive citizens, and also, Nate McMillan.

And a nice little festival of Northwest cliches by the Wall Street Journal.

Key fighting words: For the most part, Seattle fans say any similarities they share with Portlanders are due to the fact that Portlanders are simply "wannabes" who have imitated them for years. "They are very envious of us—they have a little-sister complex," said Sean Geiger, a 26-year-old army reserve from Olympia, Wash., waving a Sounders flag and explaining that most of the Timbers' following are "wine-drinking, cheese-eating yuppies" masquerading as soccer fans.

And finally, a Roger Levesque-centric look from Jeff Carlisle of ESPN.Key fighting words: Portland tries to paint Seattle as a town that jumped on the Sounders bandwagon only when the team joined MLS.

"We're very proud of the fact that when there was no light on us, nothing shining on us, we were this little Division 2 team, and we're still doing what we're doing today," said Wright. To which Sounders fans respond with a collective, "But look at us now." Their sheer numbers make them the best-supported team in MLS, and the fact that they made the step up to MLS first doesn't escape their attention, either.

"We like to sing songs at them saying, 'You're in MLS because of us,'" said Keith Hodo, president of the Emerald City Supporters, a Seattle fan group.

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