Portland Timbers

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Portland Timbers
Nickname(s)The Timbers
Founded2009[nb 1]
StadiumProvidence Park
Portland, Oregon
Ground Capacity20,438
OwnerPeregrine Sports
PresidentMerritt Paulson
Head CoachCaleb Porter
LeagueMajor League Soccer
2014Western Conference: 6th
Overall: 11th
Playoffs: DNQ
WebsiteClub home page
Primary colors
Secondary colors
Current season
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Portland Timbers
Nickname(s)The Timbers
Founded2009[nb 1]
StadiumProvidence Park
Portland, Oregon
Ground Capacity20,438
OwnerPeregrine Sports
PresidentMerritt Paulson
Head CoachCaleb Porter
LeagueMajor League Soccer
2014Western Conference: 6th
Overall: 11th
Playoffs: DNQ
WebsiteClub home page
Primary colors
Secondary colors
Current season

The Portland Timbers are an American professional soccer club based in Portland, Oregon, that competes in Major League Soccer. The Timbers are the 18th club of Major League Soccer, and replace the USL First Division's team of the same name, while retaining the same ownership. The MLS club is the fourth Portland team to share the legacy of the Timbers name, which originated in the old North American Soccer League in 1975.


The announcement of the Timbers' entry into MLS was the culmination of a nearly two-year-long process for Merritt Paulson, dating back at least to May 2007, when Paulson led a group that bought the Portland Beavers and the USL Timbers. The group included former Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson (Meritt Paulson's father) who holds a 20% stake.[1] The biggest issue for the city of Portland was that due to league concerns about seating configuration, field surface, and scheduling, obtaining an MLS club would require a new stadium.[2]

In October 2007, Paulson was told PGE Park could be upgraded for about $20 million, and a new baseball stadium (with 8,000 to 9,000 seats) would cost about $30 million.[3] By November 2008, Paulson told The New York Times he expected Portland taxpayers would spend $85 million to "build a new baseball stadium for his Beavers and renovate PGE Park—just remodeled in 2001 at a cost to taxpayers of $38.5 million—for soccer", and that in exchange, he would spend $40 million for the franchise fee to bring a new Major League Soccer team to Portland.[1] MLS was in support of the proposal, wanting to continue to expand the number of owners in the league (for a while, all of its teams were owned by three men: Phil Anschutz, Lamar Hunt, and Robert Kraft).[1]

Timbers thank their fans after a home victory

Though supporting the acquisition of an MLS franchise raised numerous issues for Mayor Sam Adams and the Portland City Council,[4] the Timbers were announced as Major League Soccer's eighteenth team on March 20, 2009 by Commissioner Don Garber.[5] The announcement occurred during the first and second round games of the 2009 NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Tournament being held in Portland the same week.[6] The announcement noted that the team would retain the Portland Timbers name.[7]

The team owner is Peregrine Sports, LLC, a group led by Merritt Paulson. Paulson was also the head of Shortstop, LLC which owned the USL-1 Timbers as well as the Pacific Coast League's Portland Beavers.

Former MLS forward and assistant coach John Spencer was named the first head coach of the MLS-era Timbers on August 10, 2010. It was also announced that Gavin Wilkinson, head coach of the USL-1/USSF D-2 Timbers, would stay on as the general manager/technical director of the MLS side.[8]

The Timbers signed five players before the MLS Expansion Draft on November 24, 2010. Three were part of the Timbers D-2 Pro League squad in 2010 (Steve Cronin, Bright Dike, and Ryan Pore), one was signed from D-2 Pro League team Austin Aztex (forward Eddie Johnson) and one was acquired via trade with New York Red Bulls (midfielder Jeremy Hall). On November 24, 2010, the Timbers, along with the other 2011 expansion team, Vancouver Whitecaps FC, participated in an MLS Expansion Draft, each selecting 10 players from existing teams.[9] Immediately after the Expansion Draft, the Timbers announced the trade of their first pick (midfielder Dax McCarty), from FC Dallas to DC United for defender Rodney Wallace.[10] The Timbers and Whitecaps also participated in the 2011 MLS SuperDraft on January 13, 2011 with the Whitecaps having the first pick, and the Timbers having the second pick. Vancouver surprised some by selecting youngster Omar Salgado and Portland swiftly selected Akron midfielder/forward Darlington Nagbe.[11]

Inaugural Season & John Spencer Era: 2011-12[edit]

The Timbers played their first MLS game on March 19, 2011, against reigning MLS champions Colorado Rapids, but lost 3–1. The first goal in the Timbers' MLS era was scored by Kenny Cooper.[12] In their first season, Portland Timbers were in 6th place in the Western Conference and 12th place overall.

On July 9, 2012, John Spencer was fired after a 0-3 loss to Real Salt Lake.[13][14] He was replaced by Caleb Porter who was previously head coach of the United States U-23 team, and the University of Akron men's team from 2006 to 2012. Gavin Wilkinson took over on an interim basis for the rest season.[15] The Timbers finished 2012 with the 3rd worst record in the league and was 8th out of 9th in the Western Conference.[16]

Caleb Porter Era: 2013–present[edit]

The Portland Timbers, under Caleb Porter, had achieved recent success in MLS. In the 2013 MLS regular season, They were first place in the Western Conference and third place overall. The main player has been Diego Valeri, who the Timbers had acquired on loan from CA Lanus with an option to purchase which they exercised on later in the season. In the 2013 Lamar Hunt's U.S. Open Cup tournament, Portland Timbers had reached to the Semi-Finals, where they were eliminated by Real Salt Lake. The Timbers also earned their first MLS playoff appearance in franchise history. They knocked off their archrival Seattle Sounders FC in the Conference Semifinals 5-3 on aggregate. The Timbers were knocked out in the Conference Finals, again losing to Real Salt Lake in a home-and-home series (5-2 aggregate). Due to a change of how American based MLS teams can qualify in the CONCACAF Champions League, by the United States Soccer Federation, Portland Timbers qualified for the 2014-15 CONCACAF Champions League, which was their first international tournament they would later take part in.[17]

In the 2014 MLS Season, Portland Timbers could not replicate the success they had in the previous season. They struggled defensively in the beginning of the 2014 MLS season with a 1-3-6 (W-L-D) record over the first ten games of the season. They were able to make a comeback late in the season, still having a chance to appear once again in the MLS Playoffs but ultimately failed to qualify. The Timbers finished the season in 6th place in the Western Conference, 11th place overall.

For the 2014-15 CONCACAF Champions League, Timbers were drawn with C.D Olimpia and Alpha United in the group stage of the tournament. They were eliminated in the group stage on away goals.

Colors and badge[edit]

Portland Timbers' MLS logo incorporates elements of the former USL design. The primary reference to the original crest is the circular shape that represents unity, wholeness, and the pursuit of perfection. The axe alludes to the Pacific Northwest's logging industry since loggers traditionally used axes to cut down trees. There are three chevrons organized to resemble a pine tree that refer to the Timbers' membership in three separate leagues: the original North American Soccer League, the United Soccer Leagues, and Major League Soccer. The team's colors, ponderosa green and moss green, represent the state of Oregon's forests.[18]

It was announced in September 2010 that the Portland Timbers' jerseys would be sponsored by Alaska Airlines.[19] On Thursday December 9 the jersey was revealed at a runway show at Portland International Airport. The home jersey is a two-tone halved green shirt[20] while the alternate jersey is red, in honor of Portland being known as the Rose City.[21]


Jeld-Wen Field 2013 season opener

The Timbers play at Providence Park, which they share with the Portland State Vikings football team and, since 2013, Portland Thorns FC, a team in the National Women's Soccer League also owned by Peregrine Sports. The stadium's renovation in 2010–2011 made it unsuitable for baseball, and former tenant the Portland Beavers moved to Tucson, Arizona after failing to find a new venue.[22]

Initially, city funding for renovation of the stadium (then known as PGE Park) was tied to simultaneous construction of a new baseball ballpark; Timbers owner Merritt Paulson was the owner of the Beavers at the time. Due to delays caused by public criticism of potential ballpark sites and an impending deadline to begin stadium renovation, the funding for the two projects was separated.[23] The capacity of the renovated stadium was expected to be between 22,000 and 23,000.[24] Operational capacity was limited to 18,627 for the 2011 MLS season and expanded to 20,323 for the 2012 season.

On February 10, 2014, the Timbers signed a long-term stadium naming rights sponsorship with Providence Health & Services, a non-profit health care provider. The stadium will be known as Providence Park until at least 2028.[25]

Club culture[edit]

Portland Timbers fans


Main article: Timbers Army

The Timbers have sold out every home game to date, with over 50 consecutive sellouts as of March 2014.[26] The Timbers cap season-ticket sales at 15,300, and have a wait list of 10,000 season tickets, the largest in MLS, and larger than almost every college football team.[27][26]

The main supporters group of the Portland Timbers is the Timbers Army. Its members are known for their loud, enthusiastic support and the raucous atmosphere they create at Timbers games.[28][29] The Timbers Army was founded in 2001 as the Cascade Rangers,[30] a reference to the Cascade Range of mountains in the Pacific Northwest region of North America. The group began congregating in section 107 ("The Woodshed") of PGE Park ("The Piggy") to create a European-style rooting section for the club, complete with drumming, flags, scarves, smoke bombs and constant chanting and cheering. By 2002, the group had changed its name to the Timbers Army in order to lose any perception of partiality toward Scottish football club Rangers and because the Timbers uniforms at the time resembled those of Rangers rival Celtic.[31] By 2012, the Timbers Army numbers more than 4,000 people in the north-end on game day.[citation needed]


The Timbers Army celebrates with smoke bombs after a Portland goal


During the NASL and USL years the team's mascot was a grizzled lumberjack named Timber Jim.[33] On January 24, 2008, Jim announced his retirement. His final farewell was a game played against Puerto Rico Islanders on April 17, 2008, which was won 1–0.[34]

Having served as the unofficial mascot from then on, Timber Joey was inaugurated as the new official mascot at an exhibition game vs Juventus Primavera on June 14, 2008,[35] a game the Timbers won 1–0,[36] and has served in that capacity ever since. Joey continues Jim's trademark of cutting a round from a large log with a chainsaw every time the Timbers score a goal. This round is presented to the goal-scoring player after the game. If the team achieves a shutout ("clean sheet"), the goalkeeper also receives a round. Timber Joey has his own custom jersey with Portland-based outdoor tool manufacturer Leatherman as the shirt sponsor.


All Portland Timbers regular-season games are televised. Roughly a third of the schedule is broadcast nationally in English by NBC, NBC Sports Network, ESPN or ESPN2 and nationally in Spanish by Univision Deportes. The rest of the games are televised regionally in English by Root Sports Northwest (formerly FSN Northwest), locally in English by FOX 12 Oregon or PDX TV and locally in Spanish by Estrella TV. Beginning in 2012 the Portland Timbers Broadcast Network was launched and provides coverage of over the air games to additional markets. Partners of the network include NTVZ/KTVZ 21.2 in Bend, OR, KEVU 23 in Eugene, OR, and KFBI 48.1 in Medford, OR.[37] FOX 12 Oregon also airs a weekly highlight show called Timbers in 30 on Friday evenings.

On the radio, all Timbers games are broadcast in English on 750 AM "The Game" and are simulcast in Spanish on both La Pantera 940 AM and Recuerdo 95.1 FM. 750 AM also features Talk Timbers, a weekly radio show dedicated to the team and soccer.[38]

Players and staff[edit]

For details on former players, see All-time Portland Timbers roster.

Current roster[edit]

Where a player has not declared an international allegiance, nation is determined by place of birth. Squad correct as of January 20, 2015.[39]

2DefenderPowell, AlvasAlvas Powell     Jamaica
4MidfielderJohnson, WillWill Johnson     Canada
6MidfielderNagbe, DarlingtonDarlington Nagbe     Liberia
7DefenderBorchers, NatNat Borchers     United States
8MidfielderValeri, DiegoDiego Valeri (DP)    Argentina
9ForwardAdi, FanendoFanendo Adi (DP)    Nigeria
10ForwardFernández, GastónGastón Fernández     Argentina
11ForwardAsprilla, DaironDairon Asprilla     Colombia
12GoalkeeperKwarasey, Adam LarsenAdam Larsen Kwarasey     Ghana
13MidfielderJewsbury, JackJack Jewsbury     United States
14MidfielderZemanski, BenBen Zemanski     United States
15DefenderJeanderson, Jeanderson     Brazil
17MidfielderNanchoff, MichaelMichael Nanchoff     United States
19DefenderVillafaña, JorgeJorge Villafaña     United States
20DefenderPeay, TaylorTaylor Peay     United States
21MidfielderChará, DiegoDiego Chará     Colombia
22ForwardWallace, RodneyRodney Wallace     Costa Rica
23DefenderPaparatto, NorbertoNorberto Paparatto     Argentina
24DefenderRidgewell, LiamLiam Ridgewell (DP)    England
26MidfielderFochive, GeorgeGeorge Fochive     United States
32ForwardTshuma, SchilloSchillo Tshuma (GA)    Zimbabwe
33GoalkeeperWeber, AndrewAndrew Weber     United States
37ForwardUrruti, MaximilianoMaximiliano Urruti     Argentina
90GoalkeeperGleeson, JakeJake Gleeson     New Zealand
MidfielderBesler, NickNick Besler     United States
DefenderThoma, AndyAndy Thoma     United States
ForwardVolesky, ChristianChristian Volesky     United States
ForwardBelmar, KharltonKharlton Belmar     United States
DefenderManning, AnthonyAnthony Manning     United States
MidfielderCasiple, SethSeth Casiple     United States


Executive staff
Majority Owner & PresidentMerritt Paulson
Chief Operating OfficerMike Golub
General Manager / Technical DirectorGavin Wilkinson

Last updated: January 23, 2012
Source: Portland Timbers

Coaching staff
Head CoachCaleb Porter
Assistant CoachSean McAuley
Assistant CoachCameron Knowles
Goalkeeping CoachMike Toshack
Head Athletic TrainerNik Wald
Assistant Athletic TrainerJun Morishita
Director of Sport ScienceDr. John Cone

Last updated: January 26, 2012
Source: Portland Timbers

Former managers[edit]


Portland Timbers 2 (T2)[edit]

Main article: Portland Timbers 2

On October 2014, Merritt Paulson had announced the creation of their own USL Pro team, Portland Timbers 2 (T2). The USL Pro team will begin to play in the 2015 USL pro season, having Merlo Field as their stadium to play for their home games. The purpose of T2 is to bridge a gap between the academies and the first level team, while having a better way to observe the players' progress and development as well.[42]



YearMLS Regular seasonPositionMLS Cup
Open Cup
Top Scorer
201134111494048426th12thDNQN/AQDNQUnited States Kenny Cooper8
201234816103456348th17thDNQCascadia Cup WinnersR3DNQScotland Kris Boyd7
201334145155433571st3rdConference FinalsN/ASDNQArgentina Diego Valeri10
201434129136152496th11thDNQN/AQGroup StageArgentina Diego Valeri11

DNQ = Did Not Qualify

CONCACAF Champions League[edit]

Portland has qualified for the CONCACAF Champions League one time, the first in the 2014-2015 edition of the tournament.[43]

Scores and results list Portland's goal tally first.
2014–15 CONCACAF Champions LeagueGroup Stage GuyanaAlpha United6–0[44]4–1[45]10–1

Player statistics[edit]


1ForwardNagbe, DarlingtonDarlington Nagbe Liberia2011–127642139
2MidfielderChara, DiegoDiego Chara Colombia2011–11844-126
3MidfielderJewsbury, JackJack Jewsbury United States2011–108643121
4MidfielderAlhassan, KalifKalif Alhassan Ghana2011–201493643106
5ForwardWallace, RodneyRodney Wallace Costa Rica2011–88444100
6GoalkeeperRicketts, DonovanDonovan Ricketts Jamaica2012–20147334-80
7MidfielderValeri, DiegoDiego Valeri Argentina2013–6344172
8Defender(soccer)Michael Harrington United States2013–20145864371
9Defender, Futty DansoFutty Danso Gambia2011–20146024-66
MidfielderJohnson, WillWill Johnson Canada2013–5654166

Last Updated: December 12, 2014.
USOC = U.S. Open Cup; CCL = CONCACAF Champions League
Bolded players are currently on the Portland Timbers roster.


1MidfielderValeri, DiegoDiego Valeri Argentina2013–2121-24
2ForwardNagbe, DarlingtonDarlington Nagbe Liberia2011–1821-21
3Midfielder, Will JohnsonWill Johnson Canada2013–1612-19
4ForwardWallace, RodneyRodney Wallace Costa Rica2011–15---15
5ForwardUrruti, MaximilianoMaximiliano Urruti Argentina2013–11--314
6MidfielderJewsbury, JackJack Jewsbury United States2011–101-112
ForwardFernandez, GastonGaston Fernandez Argentina2014–74-112
8ForwardAdi, FanendoFanendo Adi Nigeria2014–9--211
9ForwardJohnson, RyanRyan Johnson Jamaica20139-1-10
10ForwardCooper, KennyKenny Cooper United States20118---8

Last updated: December 12, 2014.
USOC = U.S. Open Cup; CCL = CONCACAF Champions League
Bolded players are currently on the Portland Timbers roster.


1MidfielderValeri, DiegoDiego Valeri Argentina2013–27---27
2MidfielderJewsbury, JackJack Jewsbury United States2011–14-2-16
MidfielderAlhassan, KalifKalif Alhassan Ghana2011–20141211216
4ForwardNagbe, DarlingtonDarlington Nagbe Liberia2011–141--15
5MidfielderJohnson, WillWill Johnson Canada2013–731213
ForwardWallace, RodneyRodney Wallace Costa Rica201310-2113
7MidfielderChara, DiegoDiego Chara Colombia2011-12-1-13
8MidfielderZizzo, SalSal Zizzo United States2011–20137---7
9MidfielderAlexander, EricEric Alexander United States2011-20126---6
10ForwardPiquionne, FredericFrederic Piquionne Martinique2013-20145---5
MidfielderSongo'o, FranckFranck Songo'o Cameroon2011–20125---5

Last updated: December 12, 2014.
USOC = U.S. Open Cup; CCL = CONCACAF Champions League
Bolded players are currently on the Portland Timbers roster.


  1. ^ Major League Soccer (MLS) franchise formed in 2009 but did not begin MLS play until 2011. Three previous incarnations of the club competed in the North American Soccer League (1975–1982), the Western Soccer League (1985–1990) and the USL First Division (2001–2010).


  1. ^ a b c Jaquiss, Nigel (November 26, 2008). "Paulson’s Pitch". Willamette Week. Retrieved March 21, 2009. 
  2. ^ Larabee, Mark (May 29, 2009). "Beavers must move out of PGE Park, league says". The Oregonian. Retrieved September 13, 2009. 
  3. ^ Gerald, Paul (October 31, 2007). "PDX’s Ball Bearings". Willamette Week. Retrieved March 21, 2009. 
  4. ^ Jaquiss, Nigel (March 11, 2009). "Soccertown Or Suckertown". Willamette Week. Retrieved March 21, 2009. 
  5. ^ "MLS awards 18th franchise to Portland". mlssoccer.com. March 20, 2009. Retrieved October 17, 2010. 
  6. ^ Paulson, MLS Seeking National Ink With Friday Announcement, a March 18, 2009 article in Willamette Week
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  11. ^ Carlisle, Jeff (January 13, 2011). "2011 MLS SuperDraft winners, losers". ESPN. Retrieved January 27, 2011. 
  12. ^ Rapids too strong, spoil expansion debut for Timbers[dead link]
  13. ^ The Associated Press (July 9, 2012). "MLS Timbers fire coach John Spencer". Cbc.ca. Retrieved September 17, 2012. 
  14. ^ "AP source: Timbers fire coach John Spencer - - SI.com". Sportsillustrated.cnn.com. July 9, 2012. Retrieved September 17, 2012. 
  15. ^ HW Krieger (July 10, 2012). "Portland Timbers coach John Spencer fired, GM Gavin Wilkinson named interim head coach". Soccer Wire. Retrieved December 7, 2014. 
  16. ^ MLS (2012). "Standings: 2012 Regular Season". MLSSoccer.com. Retrieved December 7, 2014. 
  17. ^ Major League Soccer (December 13, 2013). "Portland Timbers headed to 2014-15 CONCACAF Champions League after USSF rule change approved". 
  18. ^ "New Crest Story". Portland Timbers. Retrieved February 17, 2011. 
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  20. ^ "2011 Portland Timbers Jersey". Football Shirts News. December 9, 2010. 
  21. ^ "Timbers Unveil 2011 Jerseys". December 9, 2010. 
  22. ^ Leventhal, Josh (October 14, 2010). "Portland Beavers Plan Move To Tucson". Baseball America. Retrieved March 25, 2011. 
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  26. ^ a b Wahl, Grant (March 14, 2014). "2014 MLS Ambition Rankings: Toronto FC rises to No. 1 | Planet Futbol - SI.com". Soccer.si.com. Retrieved April 22, 2014. 
  27. ^ "Why College Football Is Studying Major League Soccer", Wall Street Journal, July 17, 2014.
  28. ^ Conover, Dan (July 18, 2008). "The Fun Five: Things to do and where to do them". The Post and Courier (Charleston, SC). Retrieved May 18, 2010. 
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  30. ^ "Community Connection: Cascade Rangers". OregonLive.com. Archived from the original on May 9, 2001. Retrieved June 15, 2010. 
  31. ^ "History". Timbers Army. Retrieved June 15, 2010. 
  32. ^ a b Wahl, Grant (May 23, 2011). "A Pacific Passion Play: Big-time clubs left Portland, Seattle and Vancouver 30 years ago, but their fans never did. Now the teams are back in MLS, and their reborn rivalries are turning the region into a hotbed of the sport". SI.com. Sports Illustrated. Retrieved June 11, 2011. 
  33. ^ Andrews, Allison. "Who is Timber Jim?". SoccerCityUSA. Retrieved February 17, 2011. 
  34. ^ "Timbers long-time icon, 'Timber Jim,' retires". Portlandtimbers.com. Retrieved December 3, 2011. 
  35. ^ "Timbers introduce Joe Webber as new mascot". Portlandtimbers.com. Retrieved December 3, 2011. 
  36. ^ "Latest News". Portland Timbers. Retrieved December 3, 2011. 
  37. ^ "Broadcast Partners". Portland Timbers. Retrieved September 17, 2012. 
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  39. ^ "Players (active)". Portland Timbers. Retrieved May 28, 2013. 
  40. ^ Martin MacMahon (October 21, 2012). "RECAP: Jewsbury, Timbers Stun Whitecaps to Take Cascadia Cup". Portland Timbers. Retrieved November 5, 2012. 
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External links[edit]

Media related to Portland Timbers at Wikimedia Commons