Skip to content

Portland Timbers 2024 MLS season preview

We’re taking you through Portland's offseason action, hopes, fears, tactics & much more.

6 min read

Where we left off last year

2023 season: 43 points, 10th in the Western Conference

In 2023, Portland had major issues in goal, key midfielders went down with long-term injuries, Evander didn’t live up to his eight-figure transfer fee, the other two DPs massively under-performed, and long-time head coach Gio Savarese was fired in August.

For those of you following along at home, that’s a big ol’ chunk of low-lights.

Truthfully, it wasn’t all bad for the Timbers. Evander showed promise after arriving from Denmark, if not the level of promise you would hope for from a club-record signing. Right back Juan Mosquera was a force to be reckoned with bombing up the wing. Oh, and Diego Chara was still an extremely useful option at the base of midfield. 

Overall, though, last season made one thing clear: the Timbers need change to push themselves back into meaningful conversations out West.

What changed in the offseason

Notable arrivals:

  • Phil Neville, manager: The former Inter Miami coach isn’t an inspiring hire and won’t do a ton to evolve his new team’s tactical approach. With a couple of players getting back to full fitness and a couple more potentially arriving for big fees, though, major tactical shifts probably won’t be necessary.
  • Kamal Miller, CB: The Timbers put together one of the largest asset packages of the offseason to get Miller in a trade with Inter Miami. By adding the Canadian, they’re clearly getting more talented in the middle of the backline. Miller has struggled at times defending in a back four, but thrives on the left side of a back three. Regardless of the specific shape, the 26-year-old will be a regular starter.
  • Maxime Crepeau, GK: Goalkeeping was a problem for Portland last year. Only the LA Galaxy allowed more goals than expected than the Timbers last year, according to FBref. Crepeau, who signed in free agency after an MLS Cup run with LAFC, will help right the ship. The veteran has been up-and-down over his last several seasons in the league, but even his downs are substantially further up than Portland’s 2023 baseline.

This post is for paid subscribers


Already have an account? Log in