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Who will be RSL's X-factor against Portland?

Russ Isabella-USA TODAY Sports

By all accounts, it looks like Jamison Olave will not be fully fit and able to play against Portland. This means that the most likely candidate to replace him will be RSL homegrown Justen Glad. The RSL coaching staff have repeatedly talked about Glad's potential as a defender and every bit of playing time he gets, especially in tough environments like that of Portland, will only serve to put some hair on his chest.

Glad has had plenty of good performances in the opportunities he has had in the past. One of his best performances was one of his earliest when he started against Tijuana. He looked like the best player on the field at the time. Other performances weren't as good like when he started against Vancouver and RSL ended up losing 4-0. In all fairness, that scoreline was not all on Justen Glad, but the defense never comes out looking very good with a scoreline like that and the game was a learning experience for Glad.

Which Glad will we see against Portland? That will largely determine how much the Timbers attack will be able to do against RSL. Glad is absolutely capable of having a fantastic performance, even against he likes of Fanendo Adi. But as we have learned over the years with young players, they are reliably inconsistent until they turn the corner, find their confidence, and learn lessons the hard way. Let's hope this is the beginning of a breakout year for Glad.