The Major League Soccer (MLS) Conference Finals resume in earnest this weekend, starting off with two games for its first leg. In the East division, Supporters Shield winners New York Red Bulls will be hosted by the Columbus Crews. In the West, FC Dallas players will travel to Oregon to face the Portland Timbers at Providence Park.
The MLS' Western Conference Championship will start with the third-seeded Timbers playing host to top-seed FC Dallas in the first leg of their two-game series. In the past three seasons, Portland have reached the West final for the second time. They have eliminated Vancouver Whitecaps FC 2-0 on aggregate during the conference semifinals, after a 2-0 second-leg win at BC Place.
Meanwhile, the FC Dallas are on the upside. The team reached the West finals and showed that they can take a series against a team with high profile veteran players. They are also in the conference championship for the first time in five years, according to USSoccerPlayers.com. They last made their lone appearance in MLS Cup in 2010 following a dramatic penalty shootout win over the Seattle Sounders FC.
In the regular season, the FC Dallas finished seven points better, but they will have to get past the Timbers in order to succeed. Analysts predict that Dallas are set to win this game as they have nothing else to prove. They have already reportedly ticked the proper boxes to call this season a success.
The first leg of the MLS Conference Finals between the Portland Timbers and FC Dallas will take place on Sunday, 7:30 p.m. EST. Those who want to keep track of the game on TV can switch to the Fox Sports 1 channel. Fans who wish to watch the game unfold on their computer screens can head to the Watch ESPN site, but they would only have access after logging in using cable subscription credentials. Fox offers a similar service via the Fox Sports 2 Go site.
Another option to watch the MLS game is to use Sling TV's free 7-day trial. It provides free online access to ESPN and other channels for one week. Users will have to register and input their credit card details, but they can cancel the trial subscription once it expires. LiveSoccer TV also has a list of free live streaming links for the game.
Soccer enthusiasts who like to keep tabs on the Dallas vs. Timbers match just by listening can do so by heading to a dedicated MLS radio station on TuneIn.com. If they are away from their desktop or laptop, they can still listen to the game through their mobile devices by downloading TuneIn's Android or iOS app for free.