You've got to love a team that attacks and celebrates

COLUMN: Timbers show great potential for televised entertainment in win
March 12, 2012 / By Cliff Pfenning,

Wow, did the Portland Timbers completely dominate the Philadelphia Union in their season opener Monday at Jeld-Wen Field.

After conceding an early second-half goal, they sent ball after ball up the left and right flanks and created scoring opportunity after opportunity, which turned into a goal midway through the half. And, then another goal. And then another, each of the three being sent home by a different player. With all the chances the team was creating, you could sense the urgency of other team members to get in on the feeding frenzy.

"I want mine, too, dammit!"

Especially as the goals were all scored in front of the rabid Timbers Army.

What might make the goals fabulous for the non-rabid fans is how they were scored - through those constant attacks, something Philadelphia just couldn't counter. The Union had a steady ball-control mentality, which regularly directed the ball backward, away from where it needed to go to score. This regularly happens with matches televised by ESPN or another sports channel.

Ball control might be sound soccer, but it's not so enjoyable to watch. The Timbers just shellacked the steady ball-control offense with its lightning quick outside midfielders, and, of course, Scottish newbie Kris Boyd. 

What a game to be at, even in the constant rain. The people with the best seats all got absolutely soaked.

Boyd, in just two games - one a preseason affair, has put an offensive jolt into the Timbers, one that has to have the rest of the league taking notice. He scored tons of goals in Scotland, but Scotland isn't a truly memorable country on the European club stage. Every goal he scores is going to lift the prestige of Scottish soccer.

And, he's great at celebrating. All the Timbers are. Monday's game was a fabulous event for photographers, myself included, as the goals were celebrated wildly in front of the Timbers Army. "Wildly" means emotion, which is great for photos.

The team seems ready to provide plenty of good emotion shots this season.