The balance of Austin FC’s inaugural season sits squarely on the shoulders of the players and coaches.
It starts with a win against Portland on Saturday.
Last place Austin FC (4-11-4) plays 7th ranked Portland Timbers (7-9-3) on Saturday night, 8pm Texas time. The second-ever meeting between these two tree-themed clubs.
Written in Verde lore, Austin FC won the first match in historic fashion, with Gallagher scoring the first-ever home goal, followed by three more goals to fell the Timbers in a dramatic 4-1 triumph. It was an unforgettable night.
Today Portland Timbers are still very beatable. The club has conceded the second-most goals in MLS this season.
On the road Portland has not produced a W in the last four away games. Not to mention the recent thrashing Seattle Sounders gave the Timbers at Providence Park — an intense rivalry game where records are typically tossed out the window.
Even historically, Portland is abysmal when playing in the confines of the Lone Star state. Per MLS stats, Timbers have won just two of 26 visits in Texas in their club history — last match they won was in 2014 against Dallas.
Score Prediction: a 2-1 Austin win against a Portland side that has struggled on the road. ATXFC dissected this team easily last time, so the blue print is there.
Finally, here’s one question Austin FC must answer to win the match and save the season:
Can the team get their confidence back on Saturday?
Adversity has gut-punched Cecilio, Pochettino, Gallagher…who are we kidding, most every player on the roster. Coach Wolff will tell you himself, the team has lost its way and confidence is at an all time low. Now we see this weekend if the team can win the battle waging in their mind. Tomorrow’s match, and the season, depend on it.
Austin FC vs. Portland Timbers at Q2 Stadium, Saturday (8/21), 8:00 p.m.
- TV: The CW Austin, UniMas Austin (Spanish)
- Streaming: Austin FC app and AustinFC.com
- Radio: Alt 97.5FM, TUDN Radio 104.3 (Spanish)
Going to the game? Check out these transportation options to the stadium. There’s also plenty of watch parties around town or breweries near the stadium if you didn’t score tickets, but want a fun atmosphere with fellow Verde fans.
Player Injury Report (Confirmed 8/20)
- OUT: Danny Hoesen (Left Hip)
- OUT: Aaron Schoenfeld (Left Knee)
- OUT: Ulises Segura (Left Knee)
- OUT: Ben Sweat (Left ACL)
Jon Gallagher starts, right? If simply because of his record-setting outing against Portland in the first match.
Cecilio sits. Not because of his poor performance on Wednesday, which Wolff has since disclosed was due to an illness. But, due to the fact he didn’t tell coaches or trainers that he was feeling ill prior to the game. Communication is key for the coaches and there must be consequences for Dominguez to set an example.
Cascante returns after resting most of last match. Romana just isn’t a starting caliber center back yet, and kicking his pink-shirted keeper last match didn’t help his case.
As far as Moussa Djitté’s status, he just started training with the team early this week. Also, Djitté hasn’t played in a professional match since May. Maybe he’ll get a run out in this match, but more likely he plays against Dallas on August 29.
Kit Colors Matchup
Austin FC wear the classic black and verde kit for another home match. Stuver hangs up the pink fit and sports the blue uni this match.