Late goal doesn't phase Spencer
For the Timbers in 2012, the final 15 minutes have been a horror show in many ways. Saturday night was no different, as Portland gave up a goal after the 75th minute of a match for the eighth time in their 12 matches.
And despite not holding onto a win against the rival Vancouver Whitecaps, John Spencer seemed neither worried or upset about failing to hold onto a late lead.
“For me, its not a massive problem,” said Spencer about the Timbers continually giving up late goals.
Spencer wasn’t the only one, who didn’t seemed to be worried about the late goal.
"They didn't have much tonight, and that one goal was just a matter of the ball bouncing the wrong way," Timbers captain Jack Jewsbury said. "I don't think it's anything but just a bad bounce.”
When asked if he was disappointed with the match, Spencer told the media that he was “disappointed in 1 person only.”
That one person was referee Jorge Gonzalez. And while Spencer was careful never to mention his name, he referred to him on multiple occasions during his post-game press conference. The point of contention occurred in the 65th minute when Kalif Alhassan was felled by Jay DeMerit. Spencer didn’t mince words regarding the play.
“(I’m) absolutely astonished we didn’t get a penalty kick,” Spencer said.
The Timbers started the match with an attacking lineup that saw the return of Eric Alexander and Kalif Alhassan to the starting lineup. Darlington Nagbe was also moved to attacking center midfield, where he played in his two-goal effort against Real Salt Lake. Spencer was happy with the style of play the new-look Timbers exhibited against their Cascadia Cup foes.
“Some of the best football we’ve played all year,” said Spencer, who didn’t think much of the Whitecaps style in the match. “They came to play for a tie and they got a tie.”
A Kris Boyd goal in the 67th minute put the Timbers ahead. Alhassan’s great defensive effort won the ball for the Timbers, who then slotted the ball to Jewsbury. Jewsbury’s cross was tipped by Vancouver’s Joe Cannon before falling to Boyd, who kicked it into the net.
Boyd’s goal did not hold up, however, as Vancouver’s Darron Mattocks scored his first career MLS goal in the 84th minute. Eric Hassli boxed out Hanyer Mosquera and was able to head the ball towards Mattocks, who deftly chested the ball to himself, before blasting over Troy Perkins.
Halftime saw a 25-minute delay as lightning swept across the Rose City. The final ten minutes of the first half were played in a downpour of rain and hail to go along with swirling winds. Despite the delay, the 25 minutes following halftime saw a Timbers side dominate the run of play.
Despite a three-week league lay-off, Spencer is taking Wednesday’s US Open Cup seriously.
“We’re going to try and win the US Open Cup,” adding that the Timbers do not have a break due to the Cup.
Portland will host Cal FC on Wednesday at Jeld-Wen Field in the third round of the US Open Cup. A win Wednesday could set up a match with three-time defending US Open Cup champion Seattle Sounders.
Tune in Tuesday night at 8:30 PM for No Pity City, live on oregonsports.com and UStream. Also check out oregonsports.com and twitter.com/theMikeDonovan for continuing Timbers coverage.
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