Portland Timbers Sign Will Johnson


The long anticipated break up of the Real Salt Lake side has begun.

Prost Amerika has confirmed a story initially on Soccer by Ives, that Canadian international midfielder Will Johnson is heading west to Portland .

No Timber is leaving ‘as part of that deal’ however it naturally pushes a few midfielders down the pecking order and more activity in both directions is to be expected in the Rose City.

Their midfield has been struggling to impose itself on games and a player of Johnson’s calibre will be an instant difference maker.

RSL will receive allocation money as they will for trading Jamison Olave and Fabian Espindola to New York.

The Olave trade was expected as the side have both Chris Schuler and Kwame Watson-Siriboe ready to step up to a starting centre half role. Olave took up a large amount of the salary cap and RSL badly needed the space having failed to qualify for the CONCACAF Cup elimination round, an achievement which grants any MLS club further allocation dollars.

The trade still has to be green lighted by MLS when the transfer window opens on Monday.

Portland owner Merritt Paulson had indicated while at the MLS Cup Final that his side were set to make big news in the coming week. There may be more to follow.

The addition of an experienced forward to New York will raise questions about two former Cascadians who seem to collect clubs like Jack Nicklaus, Sebastian Le Toux and Kenny Cooper.

Le Toux has played at Sounders FC, Philadelphia Union, Vancouver Whitecaps and the New York side in the last four year. Cooper left Portland after an apparently unhappy stint for New York.

What do you think this means in Portland, and for Real Salt Lake? Does Espindola and Henry playing together excite you? Who else will be caught up in the striker merry-go-round, Fredy Montero?


About Author

Steve is the founder and owner of Prost Amerika. He covered the expansion of MLS soccer in Cascadia at first hand. As Editor in Chief of soccerly.com, he was accredited at the 2014 World Cup Final. He is the former President of the North American Soccer Reporters Association/ Originally from Glasgow, he is a supporter of the Great Glasgow Alternative, Partick Thistle.


  1. Sorry to see Will go. But he will definitely improve Portland. Hope Kreis can replace these three as they have been big for us. A new era for RSL begins.

  2. Great addition to the Timbers. We don’t even need to teach you to hate the Sounders 😉

    Welcome to soccercityusa Will.