sports 3 days ago

Portland Timbers vs. Vancouver Whitecaps: Players to watch, time, TV channel

The Oregonian — Jamie Goldberg The Oregonian, Portland, Ore.

April 20--What: The Portland Timbers (4-2-1, 13 points) will host the Vancouver Whitecaps (2-3-1, 7 points) in an MLS regular season game.

When: Saturday, April 22 at 1 p.m. Pacific Time.

Where: Providence Park, Portland, Oregon.

TV Channel: KPTV (Comcast 12/712).

How to listen on the radio: 750 AM/102.9 FM The Game; Spanish radio: La GranD 1150 AM/93.5 FM.

Players to Watch

Portland Timbers

Diego Valeri, M: Valeri leads the Timbers with five goals and three assists this season, including one game-winning goal and two game-winning assists. Valeri has been Portland's most important player since joining the club in 2013. The Timbers will need Valeri to step up Saturday as they try to rebound after failing to score a goal last week against Kansas City.

David Guzman, M: Guzman has been critical to Portland's midfield since joining the club ahead of this season. Guzman is an intelligent and tough midfielder that brings an important defensive presence to the field while also being able to contribute to the attack when needed.

Darren Mattocks, F: With Fanendo Adi serving a suspension, the Timbers will likely turn to Mattocks to fill the striker role Saturday. Mattocks has scored some big goals for the Timbers in the past and is a proven attacking threat in MLS. Portland could look to Mattocks to come up big against his former team Saturday.

Vancouver Whitecaps

Fredy Montero, F: Montero returned to MLS this season after four years abroad. Montero is a proven goal scorer that netted 47 goals and recorded 34 assists over four seasons with the Seattle Sounders from 2009-12. Montero is already off to a strong start with Vancouver with three goals and an assist in three starts. He recorded a brace to help the Whitecaps beat Seattle 2-1 last week.

Kendall Waston, D: Waston has developed into one of the best center backs in MLS since joining the Whitecaps in 2014. He was named to the MLS Best XI in 2015 and made the MLS All-Star team last season. Waston can use his height and physical play to cause problems for opposing attackers and also be a weapon on set pieces for Vancouver.

Matias Laba, M: Laba has been a mainstay in Vancouver's midfield since 2014. He is an experienced and effective holding midfielder. He is an asset for Vancouver on defense and is capable of being a useful piece in the attack as well. He is off to a strong start this year with two goals in five starts.

-- Jamie Goldberg -- jgoldberg@oregonian.com

503-853-3761 -- @jamiebgoldberg

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