Match Preview

Match Preview: Unbeaten Atlanta United hosts Portland Timbers at Mercedes-Benz Stadium


Quick Hits

Match Details

  • Date: Saturday, March 18
  • Kickoff time: 7:30 p.m.
  • Location: Mercedes-Benz Stadium
  • Tickets: View tickets

How to watch, listen and live stream Atlanta United vs. Portland Timbers

Recent Form

Atlanta United is unbeaten after three matches, which marks the best start in club history. The team racked up wins against San Jose Earthquakes and on the road against Charlotte FC, and also have a point from a draw with Toronto FC. Portland Timbers, on the other hand, started off on a good note with three points in their season opener but have dropped two since to the teams currently atop the Western Conference standings: reigning MLS Cup champion LAFC and the red-hot expansion club St. Louis CITY SC.

Last Meeting

This will be Portland's first trip to Mercedes-Benz Stadium since losing the MLS Cup 2-0 to Atlanta United in 2018. The Timbers did earn three points against Atlanta in the most recent meeting last season, beating the 5-Stripes 2-1 at Providence Park.

Players To Watch

Miles Robinson (Atlanta United) – The reliable center back for Atlanta United is having quite the return after missing most of the 2022 season due to injury. Robinson, who might looks even faster and stronger than he was before, helped the 5-Stripes post its first clean sheet of the season last week in the 3-0 shutout in Charlotte. This week, the 26-year-old celebrated his birthday, earned a spot on MLS Team of the Matchday and received his first callup to the U.S. men's national team since his injury. Keep an eye on Robinson and his counterparts on the backline as they look to earn their second straight clean sheet.

Zac McGraw (Portland Timbers) – On the other side of the pitch is another noteworthy defender, Portland's Zac McGraw. At 6-foot-4, the center back is an imposing presence on the backline for Portland -- as well as an aerial threat in the offensive third. Last week against St. Louis CITY SC, McGraw scored a header off a corner kick in the third minute to own the fastest goal in MLS to be scored so far this season. Robinson and Juanjo Purata for Atlanta United will need to make sure McGraw is marked tightly on set pieces.

Head coach Gonzalo Pineda on Portland Timbers:

"If I know something about Portland is they are always competitive, especially with Gio [Savarese]. No matter who they put on the field, they're always competitive, battle and fight for every ball. I know that side, so I don't think they're going to be feeling sorry for themselves for having a lot of injuries. They're going to come with everything, try to win and try to beat us. So, no assumptions at all."

Atlanta United
Portland Timbers
Head coach
Gonzalo Pineda
Giovanni Savarese
2023 record (W-L-T)
2-0-1 (7 points)
1-2-0 (3 points)
Primary Colors
Red, black, gold
Dark green, gold
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