SEATTLE – The lineups are in at CenturyLink Field and Clint Dempsey will make his home debut for Sounders FC in the starting lineup in the biggest rivalry in the league against the Portland Timbers.
Dempsey is no stranger to big rivalry matches, playing with the U.S. against Mexico on the international stage and with Fulham he engaged in the West London Derby against Chelsea throughout his time at Craven Cottage.
“It’s bragging rights. It’s going to be an intense game. People are going to fight until the end,” he said. “You know how much it means to the fans and making sure that they go home happy. We’re going to do everything we can to make sure that happens.”
Dempsey will start with Eddie Johnson at forward as the U.S. National Team partners start together for the first time with Sounders FC.
In the midfield, Head Coach Sigi Schmid will go with Brad Evans on the right, Lamar Neagle on the left and a central pairing of Osvaldo Alonso and Shalrie Joseph.
The back four will be DeAndre Yedlin on the right, Leo Gonzalez on the left and Zach Scott and Jhon Kennedy Hurtado in the middle. Michael Gspurning will start in net.
On the bench will be Marcus Hahnemann, Marc Burch, Servando Carrasco, Patrick Ianni, Mauro Rosales, Djimi Traore and Eriq Zavaleta.
For the Timbers, Head Coach Caleb Porter will start Donovan Ricketts in net; a back four of Alvas Powell, Pa Modou Kah, Andrew Jean-Baptiste and Michael Harrington; a four-man midfield of Kalif Alhassan, Jack Jewsbury, Diego Valeri and Rodney Wallace; and forwards Ryan Johnson and Darlington Nagbe. The listed 4-4-2 formation differs from their normal 4-3-3, but with the absences of Diego Chara and Will Johnson, a formation change became necessary.
On the bench are Milo Kocic, Steven Evans, Rauwshan McKenzie, Ryan Miller, Jose Adolfo Valencia, Ben Zemanski and Sal Zizzo.