ptfc soccer

COVID-19 finally strikes Timbers schedule

Saturday's match with Colorado gets postponed due to Rapids outbreak
Staff Report

The MLS game between the Colorado Rapids and the Portland Timbers has been postponed after the Rapids confirmed two more players and a staff member tested positive for COVID-19 on Thursday.

"Major League Soccer today announced that the match between the Colorado Rapids and Portland Timbers, scheduled for Saturday at Providence Park, has been postponed after two additional Colorado Rapids players and one additional staff member have confirmed cases of COVID-19," a league statement said.

"For the health and safety of all players and staff, Major League Soccer postponed the match until Nov. 4 at 10 p.m. ET.

"Following the first confirmed positive cases of COVID-19 on Sept. 24, the Colorado Rapids closed their training facility and have not trained since. All players and staff with confirmed cases of COVID-19 have entered self-isolation and the players and staff that have continued to receive negative results have remained in self-quarantine while following MLS health and safety protocols."

The Rapids suspended training late last week when a first round of positive tests came through that included one player and three staff, and placed them in self-isolation. MLS then took the step of postponing the Rapids match on Sunday. A source added that the Rapids had hoped to return to training by Friday.

The postponement on Saturday's Colorado-Portland match is the second since MLS teams began playing games in home markets following the MLS is Back Tournament, which concluded on Aug. 11. At that tournament, which was held inside a bubble in Orlando, both FC Dallas and Nashville SC were forced to pull out due to a cluster of confirmed positive tests.

Since then, there had been less than a handful of confirmed positive tests. The Chicago Fire announced on Aug. 21 that one of its players had a confirmed positive test. More recently, FC Cincinnati said on Saturday that one of its players had a confirmed positive test.


Finally, the Portland Timbers put their offense and defense together at the same time - and historic fashion.

Despite having just 38 percent of possessions Saturday night, the Timbers scored a franchise record six goals and thwarted host San Jose time and again on the way to a 6-1 win in MLS action.

Diego Valeri scored twice and had an assist as the team topped its previous high late in the match.

Portland's win moved it into a tie for fourth in the Western Conference standings with two matches remaining, both at home.

"It was a wonderful match, regardless of the score," Portland coach Gio Savarese told media via virtual contact.

Portland improved to 5-4-3 for 18 points, while San Jose fell to 2-5-5, 11 points. The Earthquakes, who trailed just 2-1 at halftime, were 10 days removed from a 7-1 shellacking in Seattle.

In between San Jose's two defensive blowouts, the team scored a pair of draws, including 1-1 against Portland Wednesday. A number of changes in the starting rotation by both teams saw a seesaw match until Valeri broke the tie in the 25th minute with a penatly-kick goal after a handball was called. Moments later, Jeremy Ebobise headed home a long pass from Jorge Villafana to double the lead. 

San Jose answered in the 44th minute with a Carlos Fierro score and put consistent pressure on Timbers goalie Aljaz Ivacic, but he made a number of highlight-reel saves to keep the Earthquakes at bay. Starting his first match for Portland, Ivacic recorded three saves.

Valeri scored again in the 57th minute on an assist from Diego Charra and the route was on after San Jose responded with four substitutions - all offensive-minded players for defensive players. The Timbers got goals from Yimmi Chara, Julio Cascante and Jaroslaw Niezgoa in the remaining time to surpass its previous MLS high of five goals scored against Minnesota to open the 2017 season.

Portland plays host to Seattle Wednesday, and Vancouver Sunday. The Sounders lead the Western Conference with 21 points, while the Whitecaps won for the third time in four matches with a 2-1 decision at Real Salt Lake Saturday and moved into a tie for seventh place, with the top eight teams reaching the playoffs.

The Timbers edged Seattle 2-1 on Sept. 6 in Seattle two weeks after losing 3-0 at home. They have not played Vancouver this season.



Sept. 16, 2020

In the long-term view, the Portland Timbers only have to qualify for the MLS playoffs to be a contender for the 2020 league tournament.

In the short-term view, though, the frustration from recent results leaves plenty of hardcore fans to wonder how the team will be competitive for any playoff results, especially after such a strong performance at the league’s MLS is Back tournament in August.

Portland struggled to a 1-1 draw with host San Jose Wednesday, earning one point in the Western Conference standings to remain tied for fifth with both Los Angeles clubs needing only to finish eighth to reach the playoffs.

The draw, however, came only a week after the Earthquakes lost 7-1 to Seattle, and days after the team failed to score against the LA Galaxy - in a 0-0 draw. San Jose has allowed three or more goals in three of its five games since the league returned to regular-season play. 

Yimmi Chara scored his first goal of the season off a feed from brother Diego to put Portland up 1-0 in the 33rd minute, but San Jose tied the match with a score by Vako off a feed from Chris Wondolowski.

San Jose dominated possession (63-37 percent) and shots (19-6), causing goalkeeper Steve Clark to make five assists, including a dazzing one in the final minutes. Most of San Jose’s possessions (75 percent) were spent in the Timbers side of the field.

The draw improved the Timbers to 1-3-2 since its return, but continued a familiar pattern of game-play where they create a lead, but cannot hold it. Portland has scored first in four of its six matches, including Wednesday’s match, but managed a win in just one. Those stats include giving up two goals in extra time in a 4-4 draw with Real Salt Lake two weeks ago.

Portland (15 points) plays at San Jose again Saturday with its final two matches at home against Seattle and Vancouver.

San Jose (12) and Vancouver (11) occupy the bottom two spots in the Western Conference standings.

Houston and RSL are tied for eighth at 14 points, with Colorado at 13.


Timbers flattened at home

Orlando City's energy ends up in a 2-0 victory over Portland
April 12, 2015 / Staff report

PORTLAND - An ugly game turned into an ugly result Sunday as the Portland Timbers lost 2-0 to expansion Orlando City at Providence Park.

The Timbers, who hadn't lost at home in seven consecutive games, gave up a goal in each half - the second coming on a penalty kick by Kaka.

With the result, Portland dropped to 1-2-3, 6 points on the season, with a road game at the New York Red Bulls next Sunday, followed by a Cascadia Cup match at Seattle, April 26.

Orlando City improved to 2-2-2, 8 points.

Cyle Larin scored in the 30th minute to put Orlando City up a goal, and then Kaka added the PK after Portland keeper Adam Kwarasey was called for a penalty in the box. Kwarasey initially blocked the attempt, but Kaka was given a second attempt after two Timbers were ruled to have been in the penalty box before the kick went off.

Portland led the game in time of possession, shots, shots on goal and even crossing passes, but was widely viewed as being far less energetic than the visiting side.


RSS feed