Welcome back everyone.
Well, well, well...how a couple of wins can change the feeling around a team. Since the firing of Marc Dos Santos, two straight victories have helped turn a mixed run of form into one of the better stretches of MLS play in recent memory for the club, and they seem to be enjoying it.
Portland presents an unpredictable challenge though. While objectively (and according to any advanced numbers you look at) they have not been a very good team this year, especially defensively, they do have an odd knack for pulling out surprising results in big matches. The jewel in their crown in this regard being a recent 2-0 victory over the Seattle Sounders at Lumen Field, which they backed up with a 2-0 win over Houston last weekend. Portland currently sits sixth in the West on 30 points, just one point ahead of Vancouver.
Vancouver will still have to deal with the international absences of Javain Brown, Maxime Crepeau and Lucas Cavallini, who appear questionable to feature given the short turnaround of a friday match. The Whitecaps will also have to contend with the continual depth concerns at fullback, as Jake Nerwinski and Cristian Gutierrez are both out for this one.
On the competition front, a big shout out to Isabelt, the first half champion is right back in the mix after a perfect week against Austin FC!
Alright, on to the rules and standings:
- Predictions will be ‘valid’ if posted HERE (or more accurately, the correct match thread) prior to the lineup being officially announced, usually about an hour before kickoff.
- You receive 1 point for every player you correctly guess to be in the Starting XI. You receive 4 bonus points for correctly predicting all 11 starters.
- You get 5 points for correctly guessing Win/Lose/Draw, this doubles to 10 if you also predict the right score-line along with the result.
- That means, if you correctly predict the Starting XI, Final Score, and Winner, you can earn 25 points!
- At the end of each quarter, the contestants lowest score of that period will be deducted from the cumulative standings.