Need something to talk about? Well the Timbers collapsed late at home (again), and the Thorns bounced back with a 4-0 victory (again!). There’s also USMNT U-20 World Cup going on, and the USWNT suffered a blow when it was revealed that rising star Catarina Macario will miss out on the World Cup this summer.
It's me! Hi! I'm the problem, it's me!
I've heard people are wondering if I still exist, and I do! I've had trouble getting into the routine of checking substack, and after the Thorns had a couple questionable games I wasn't feeling much like commenting.
But don't worry, I'm in therapy, and committed to establishing good habits and making better life choices from here on out.
Did this excellent Thorns performance and result help solidify for the coaching staff that Sinc shouldn't start anymore? Thoughts...
Tegan McGrady was on the podcast Urban Pitch this week. They have a pretty interesting conversation about trades and the mental difference between offseason vs mid-season trades, and her emotions around her trade to Portland. One interesting tidbit was that Portland and San Diego had an agreement that she could continue speaking with San Diego's team sports psych for the rest of the season.
Still hoping she gets healthy soon and can get some minutes for the Thorns. Also, she's from the Bay area and went to Stanford, which might be important come expansion time.
The Thorns just scored four goals, none of them by a forward: two defenders (Hubly, Kuikka) and two midfielders (Dunn, Moultrie) took the honors. When was the last time we had that many goalscorers without a forward on the list?
Seems like the sale of the club is on indefinite hold. Not even getting the sense that anyone is asking about it anymore. Wonder why? Seems like a pretty important thing to know about...
Dunno if anyone has listened to the new Soccer Made In Portland episode, but there's some small discussion on the sale of the Thorns at the end. The news? No news. Nothing. Nada.
Ryan says (admittedly without a ton of evidence) that word around the NWSL is that Ol Reign and Chicago sales will happen before the Thorns. But, otherwise there's been nothing. Disappointing, and, frustrating being stuck in limbo. Siiigh
Any thoughts about the starting 11 for Sunday's match v. KC?
I believe Zuparic is out due to yellow cards, Mora, Williamson and Ayala are injured, and Blanco is in danger of suspension. ( source: https://www.transfermarkt.us/portland-timbers/sperrenundverletzungen/verein/4291 )
Boli (sub Niezgoda 64")
Asprilla (sub Blanco 79") Evander Moreno (sub Y Chara 64")
Paredes D Chara
Bravo (y) McGraw (y) Zuparic (y) Mosquera
I did see a note somewhere that the window to sign NTRP's is very soon. Wondering if we'll see a return of Lauren DeBeau (F), one of our draft picks. If so, it would be strange to me that she wouldn't have stayed to practice with the team this whole time. OL Reign have said they'll bring on multiple draft picks of theirs who were unsigned as some of their NTRP's...but they've all been practicing with the team since preseason. Which, seems smart?
We're gonna need several NTRP's/short-term loans imo. We have only 3 midfielders total lol: Coffey, Moultrie, and Porter. That's it! The quality of our F line/depth is also questionable. We'll see what KK can do....
Here's some proper GM work: "Brazilian defender Rafaelle Souza will leave Arsenal this summer after 18 months at the club.
Rafaelle has made 21 #WSL appearances for the club and was a big part in Arsenal’s run to the #UWCL semi-finals this season."
She's rumoured to be linked to Orlando Pride. The GM surely got an assist from queen Marta of the Brazilian contingent here, but, poaching Arsenal's best CB is no light work. She's 31...I'd like a CB signing younger than this, but still, KK? Got any BIG tricks up those red blazer sleeves of yours? Can't we do better than Canadians who are depth players? We really need some better defensive depth, and will very soon also need a long-term CB general to run the line...no easy find.
As FDChief notes, the sale is the big question. Is KK on her way out? Is big spending paused? Will they just kick the Horan can down the road with a loan extension and lose out on big $$$? Can we get ANY info about the damn sale? We're a few days from it being 6 months and we've gotten nothing aside from the initial news of who it could be (also 6 months ago.)
So…any thoughts on the (likely) loss of Horan?
She would be an asset - hard to see why not - but it seems less and less likely to see her here again. Given the lack of new hills for her to climb here, and the lack of personal ties to the current club? I can’t see any draw beyond the pure contractual.
So perhaps it’s because I’ve been expecting this that I’m not distraught. Disappointed? Sure. But I suspect I’ve been moving on for the past year, and just didn’t know it.
I've been thinking of what players the Timbers would be core players in the coming years. At this time I've narrowed it down to Moreno, Ayala, Mosquera, Evander, Paredes, Bravo and McGraw. I also have Williamson and Ikoba on the list, but both have flags on their names (Williamson due to injury and Ikoba as a purely developmental player). There are a bunch that I'm fine with holding on to, but those 7/9 players are the core going forward for me. I think the three defenders are a group that can grow into a top-5 group in MLS, Paredes and Ayala would solidify the mid-field with a lot of growth potential, and Moreno and Evander have the potentail to grow into MVP level players (Mosquera as well). I left off Diego Chara because of his age, but would be fine having him as the elder statesman of the mid-field. I like Ikoba as a developmental striker and hope he can grow into the role. Williamson is the controversial choice, but I think if he is healthy he is a really good attacking mid-fielder and mixing him with Paredes and Ayala adds a nice dimesion to the team.