Timbers leave Wednesday for MLS Cup in Atlanta

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PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — The Portland Timbers and Atlanta United FC will face off in just three days for MLS Cup. 

The Timbers are scheduled to leave Wednesday with the big game on Saturday, Dec. 8  in Atlanta’s Mercedes-Benz Stadium. An estimated 75,000 soccer fans are expected to be in attendance.

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The last time the Timbers won it all was in 2015 — when they went into Columbus and beat them on their home turf. Atlanta United is playing for the title in just their 2nd season in the league.

The Timbers have nine players on their roster who have won an MLS Cup final, including eight from that 2015 team. Atlanta has two, and one of them — Darlington Nagbe — was with Portland in 2015.

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Atlanta United FC is the clear favorite in the title game. They finished 2nd in the Eastern Conference with a record of 21-7-6 and were 11-2-4 at home. They have a high-powered offense and scored a total of 70 goals in the regular season. Their defense is excellent and surrendered only 44 goals all year, leading to a +26 differential.

The Timbers finished 5th in the Western Conference in coach Giovanni Savarese’s first season on the sidelines. They were 15-10-9 overall, with the same home record as Atlanta. But the Timbers were only 4-8-5 on the road during the season.

The Timbers play good defense, and gave up only 48 goals through the course of the season. But they scored only 54, which gives them a +6 differential.

KOIN 6 News Sports Reporter AJ McCord will be at the game. Follow her coverage here.

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