Sounders Insider

Quick look ahead to Timbers at Sounders

Here's a quick overview of tonight's much-anticipated match:

The preview from today's News Tribune.

Cover from today's Oregonian.

And the basics:

PORTLAND TIMBERS (4-3-1; 13 PTS.) AT SEATTLE SOUNDERS FC (3-3-4; 13 PTS.)8 p.m., Qwest Field.TV: ESPN2. RADIO: 97.3 FM (99.3 FM in Spanish).HEAD TO HEAD: This is their first meeting as MLS sides. However, Seattle leads 39-27-8 through MLS, WSL, USL and U.S. Open Cup. The Sounders will visit Portland on July 10.TEAM LEADERS: For Portland – G 3, Kenny Cooper; A 4, Kaliff Alhassan; S 18, Cooper; SOG 8, Cooper; GAA 1, Troy Perkins. For Seattle – G 4, Brad Evans; A 3, Mauro Rosales; S 28, Fredy Montero; SOG 14, Montero; GAA 1, Kasey Keller.NOTES: Seattle is 2-1-1 at home, Portland is 0-3-1 on the road. Over their last five games the Sounders are 2-1-2, the Timbers 4-1. … The game is sold out, including 500 tickets made available to Portland supporters – 350 more than the usual allotment for visiting fans. … Seven of Portland’s 11 goals have come on set pieces, the highest percentage (64) in the league. … Seattle midfielder Mauro Rosales (hamstring) is questionable. … Sounders Nate Jaqua and Terry Boss were born in Oregon, and Keller attended the University of Portland. … Seattle defender Jhon Kennedy Hurtado and Portland forward Jorge Perlaza are cousins. …According to MLS’ new Castrol player index, the top active Sounder is Hurtado (ranked 21st in the league), while the top Timber is Rodney Wallace (22nd). … This game is the first in the 2011 Cascadia Cup competition between Seattle, Portland and Vancouver. … Seattle defender Leo Gonzalez is one caution away from a one-game yellow-card suspension. … Portland will wear its alternate red kits for the first time. … The Emerald City Supporters are holding a block party (21 and older) starting at 2 p.m. at the corner of Occidental Avenue and South Washington Street in Pioneer Square. The March to the Match begins at 7 p.m. at Occidental Park. … The referee is Jair Marrufo. … The Seattle and Portland reserves will meet at 1 p.m. Sunday at Starfire Sports Stadium in Tukwila.QUOTABLE: “They’re a pretty direct team: They don’t mess about with it a whole lot. They try to get it in front of your goal as quickly as possible and hope for things to happen; and things have happened for them.” – Sounders coach Sigi Schmid on the Timbers.NEXT: Sporting Kansas City, 7 p.m. May 21, Qwest Field.

And a few notes on these two franchises and their rivalry:

This is the 75th meeting in a rivalry that dates to May 2, 1975, and through the North American Soccer League, the Western Soccer League, USL-1 and the U.S. Open Cup. Seattle leads, 39-27-8.

Among the best-known players to wear a Sounders uniform are Jimmy Gabriel, Alan Hinton, Pepe Fernandez, Jeff Stock, Freddie Ljungberg and Kasey Keller. Among the Timbers’ immortals are John Bain, Jimmy Conway and Jim Serrill, an actual lumberman who became the team mascot.

Sounders goalkeeper Kasey Keller played at Portland University under former Timbers great Clive Charles.

As an MLS team, Seattle is 2-0 against Portland, defeating the USL Timbers in the 2009 and 2010 U.S. Open Cup. This is their first meeting as MLS rivals.

This is the first game of the 2010 Cascadia Cup competition, which will be decided by results of a round-robin MLS competition between Seattle, Portland and Vancouver. Portland currently holds the Cup, winning the two-team first-division competition with Vancouver last season.

Portland took the nickname “Soccer City USA” in 1975 after playing four consecutive home games before crowds of more than 23,000. Two of those games came against the Sounders.

Seattle leads MLS with an average home attendance of 36,289. Portland is fifth with an average of 18,627. However, every home game for each team has been a sellout.