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MATCH PREVIEW: Earthquakes prepare to host the Portland Timbers on short rest

The San Jose Earthquakes will host the Portland Timbers this Saturday, May 15, just three days following a midweek match against Western Conference leaders Seattle Sounders FC, presented by Rotten Robbie. Saturday’s match will mark San Jose’s third match within a span of eight days and the second of a three-match homestand.

San Jose’s three-match win streak was snapped on Wednesday when a single shot on goal was enough to see Sounders FC walk away with a 1-0 victory. Despite the loss, the Quakes remain in second place in the Western Conference and will enter Saturday’s match against Portland with an updated 3-2-0 (9 pts.) overall record.

Earthquakes head coach Matias Almeyda had positive takeaways from his assessment of Wednesday night’s loss to the only unbeaten team in the Western Conference.

"I am pleased with the team's production while they were looking for the tie, and ultimately the win if they had tied the game,” Almeyda said after the match. “That's the way football goes. You prepare, you get there and for some reason you can't put them away. You play against a team of this pedigree and they only needed one shot to score a great goal. I will highlight the path we took in trying to tie the game, that intensity, getting through on the sides, the mobility and the pressure. We saw a lot of good things."

Almeyda also recognizes the quick turnaround leading up to Saturday’s match at PayPal Park. He and his coaching staff will assess the fitness of the players and plan for possible changes.

"We will have to make a thorough analysis of Portland,” Almeyda shared. “For us, every team in the league is challenging, not just Seattle and Portland. We respect everyone but we know we have to be doing very well to compete against anybody. We will analyze Portland, and then we will assess who has recovered from this match and determine if changes are necessary in order to renew energy."

The Portland Timbers have historically been a challenging opponent for San Jose but the Quakes have an advantage when facing them at home. Despite trailing 5-13-8 in all-time regular season fixtures against Portland, the Quakes hold a favorable 5-3-5 record as hosts.

Portland’s start to the 2021 season has been rough as the Oregon side struggles to find their form. The opponent enters Saturday’s match coming off two straight losses, putting them 1-3-0 (3 pts.), good for 12th in the Western Conference. Portland was outscored 6-2 in matches against FC Dallas (Week 3, 4-1) and Seattle Sounders FC (Week 4, 2-1).

The Quakes are 1-3-1 in their last five fixtures against Portland. San Jose will need to produce their first victory over the Timbers since 2019 (April 6, 3-0) in order to get back to winning ways and remain among the top teams in the Western Conference.

Saturday’s kickoff is set for 7:00 p.m. PT and will be broadcast live on NBC Sports California, KNBR 1050 and 1370 KZSF.

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