| ||PROBABLE LINEUPS||Portland Timbers (4-3-3): Ricketts; Miller, Mosquera, Silvestre, Harrington; Chara, Valeri, W. Johnson; Alhassan, R. Johnson, Nagbe. ||New York Red Bulls (4-3-3): Robles; Kimura, Olave, Pearce, Miller; McCarty, Juninho, Cahill; Espindola, Henry, Izquierdo.|| ||DID YOU KNOW?|
Last season New York qualified for the playoffs but lost to Houston at the first ask. Portland fired coach John Spencer midway through the season and finished with the third worst record in the league.
New York's early playoff exit cost coach Hans Backe his job. Unable to find a suitable candidate from Europe, Red Bull appointed former player Mike Petke as his replacement. The Timbers have a new coach as well: former Akron manager Caleb Porter.
The clear out extended to the players for the Red Bulls. Rafa Marquez returned to Mexico. European veterans Jan Gunnar Solli, Teemu Tainio, Victor Palsson and Joel Lindpere all departed. MLS stalwarts Sebastien Le Toux, Kenny Cooper and Wilman Conde also found themselves on the outside of the cuts. The main addition was 38-year-old Brazilian midfielder Juninho. Trades within the league brought in Fabian Espindola, Jamison Olave, Jonny Steele, Kosuke Kimura and Eric Alexander, the latter two from Portland.
The Timbers also reshuffled a large chunk of the squad. Designated Player Kris Boyd, Franck Songo'o and Danny Mwanga led the exodus. Diego Valeri, Mikaël Silvestre, Frédéric Piquionne and newly-named captain Will Johnson will form the core of Porter's side.
The last time these teams met in Portland, in 2011, Thierry Henry was sent off in a 3-3 draw. Last season, the Red Bulls edged a 3-2 win at home.