At long last, the Colorado Rapids are back after the intermission provided by winning the West and earning the first-round bye in the Audi 2021 MLS Cup Playoffs. The Portland Timbers defeated Minnesota United FC, earning them a date with the Burgundy Boys.

The match may well end up being one of the biggest in the entire season for MLS, because it’s the league’s first-ever match on Thanksgiving Day. Who knows, this may become an annual tradition for America and Canada’s top flight soccer league.

Since it is the biggest game of the season for the Colorado club (so far), everybody is writing about it and talking about it. It is the town topic in the Mile High City, so let’s take a look at it from the numbers side.

Head to head: Colorado Rapids v. Portland Timbers

  • The Rapids are 9-10-6 against the Timbers.
  • This is the first postseason match-up between the two sides.
  • The Rapids and Timbers have both been to two MLS Cups, each winning once. Colorado in 2010 and the Timbers in 2015.
  • The last three times the Rapids have clinched playoff spots (2021, 2020, 2016), it came against the Timbers.
  • In two games in 2021, the two sides split the spoils in the first meeting when a pesky 10-man Portland side fought back to draw 2-2. In the second meeting, the Rapids hosted and left no doubt, winning 2-0.
  • Forwards Dominique Badji and Diego Rubio found the back of the net in the game at elevation, assisted by Braian Galván on both.
  • Under Robin Fraser, the Rapids have never lost to the Timbers, boasting a 2-0-1 record.
  • The Timbers haven’t defeated the Rapids since September 8th, 2018 at Providence Park. The match was also Rapids’ Homegrown Cole Bassett’s MLS debut.

A closer look at the 2021 Portland Timbers:

  • Record: 17-13-4 (55 points)
  • Standings: 4th in the West, 5th in the Supporters’ Shield
  • 2021 Away Record: 6-2-9 (20 points)
  • Form the last five matches: LWWWW (The loss five games ago was to the Rapids.)
  • Round One Playoff Result: 3-1 over MNUFC
  • Portland’s four-game winning streak is longest active streak in MLS
  • Forward Felipe Mora won the club’s Golden Boot with 11 goals
  • Midfielders Yimmi Chara and Sebastián Blanco led the way with seven assists
  • Steve Clark is the primary goalkeeper but they used five total in 2021
  • The club’s best run of form came from August 29th to October 3rd when they went 7-0-1. (The one draw was against the Rapids.)
    Defender Claudio Bravo led MLS in tackles with 55.
  • Per fbref.com, the Timbers were last in MLS in possession with 44.9% of the ball per game.
  • Portland has scored three goals in three consecutive games.

And a closer look at the home side, your Colorado Rapids:

  • Record: 17-7-10 (61 points)
  • Standings: 1st in the West, second in the Supporters’ Shield
  • 2021 Home Record: 9-7-1 (34 points)
  • Form the last five matches: DWLWW
  • Round One Playoff Result: Bye
  • The Rapids one home loss was the fewest in the West. Only Nashville’s unbeaten home campaign was better.
  • Forward Michael Barrios is the club’s golden boot winner with 8.
  • The captain Jack Price notched 12 assists to lead the helper category. Tied 4th most in MLS.
  • GK William Yarbrough played all 90 minutes in 33 of Colorado’s 34 matches.
  • Yarbrough and Auston Trusty led the way in minutes played with 2970 each.
  • The Club’s best run of form was an unbeaten run from July 31st to September 29th where they went 6-0-6.
  • Since the beginning of 2019, the Rapids have scored 44 set piece goals in 90 matches.
  • Per fbref.com, the Rapids had the third highest aerial duel percentage won at 52.8%.