ATLANTA — Timbers defender Liam Ridgewell stated that Saturday evening’s MLS Cup last is “one thing to look ahead to, not to fear,” and although he was referring to the sport extra typically, the identical might be stated of Portland’s problem in shutting down Atlanta’s vaunted attack.
United most notably boasts single-season MLS objective-scoring document holder Josef Martinez and English Premier League goal Miguel Almiron. However Ridgewell stated the workforce is used to dealing with excessive-powered offenses and will probably be prepared as they give the impression of being to win their second league championship in 4 years at Mercedes-Benz Stadium.
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“We’re excited to meet the problem,” Ridgewell stated. “It is one thing to look ahead to, not to fear. [It’s] the identical factor we have been doing all season towards fairly large assaults in each single workforce, whether or not it is [Zlatan] Ibrahimovic or [David] Villa or anyone you come up towards.
“I feel we play towards a high quality striker each single week. Now we have to maintain him quiet, nullify every little thing they have going ahead and check out to get it going our manner. One of the best factor we will do to defend is to damage them and make them frightened about what we do.”
Portland’s protection has not been given as a lot credit score as midfielders Diego Valeri and Sebastian Blanco for its run by means of the Western Convention. And it is true that they have not been flawless, surrendering 4 objectives within the convention semifinal sequence towards Seattle alone. However the again line has completed sufficient to get them this far, and it appears undaunted by the duty on Saturday evening.
“I feel Martinez’s document speaks for itself when it comes to his objective-scoring prowess,” exterior-again Zarek Valentin stated. “Kudos to him — he does not want many possibilities. You give him one or two, and he often places one behind the online. With Almiron and Darlington [Nagbe] and some of those different guys, with [Julian] Gressel serving the ball, they’re tough and might hit you from loads of completely different angles and in loads of alternative ways.
“They’re effectively-rounded, and we now have to be prepared for all aspects. I feel if we management our sport, and play the best way that we would like to play, we’re going to make it tough.”