LA Galaxy 1, Portland Timbers 1 | 2016 MLS Match Recap
No one walked away from StubHub Center particularly happy after a clash between the last two MLS Cup champions on Sunday night, as a late own goal by Nat Borchers canceled out Fanendo Adi's fine strike and Darlington Nagbe left the game injured after a bruising tackle by Nigel de Jong.
Adi took advantage of hesitation by Rafael Garcia, who came on as an early substitute for the injured Robbie Rogers, to lash a low drive into the bottom right corner for a deserved Portland lead in the 52nd minute. But Borchers, who was otherwise excellent all evening, dived to nod Sebastian Lletget's driven cross into his own net in the final stages and LA escaped with a point.
But the night's biggest talking point was de Jong's rugged, studs-up challenge on Nagbe in the 73rd, a tackle which drew only a yellow card from referee Allen Chapman yet sparked fury among the Timbers players and coaching staff.
- 52’ – POR – Fanendo Adi (Diego Valeri)
- 82' – LA – Nat Borchers (OG)
- Full box score
- Watch highlights
1. CUE MORE CONTROVERSY: Even if you got tired of hearing about disciplinary topics over the past week or two, you'll probably have to settle in for more to come. The de Jong-Nagbe incident figures to be analyzed and discussed for days to come, and FOX's broadcast team was in consensus on their opinion that the Disciplinary Committee will take a look.
2. GIO STILL STRUGGLING: Giovani dos Santos was handed the Galaxy playmaking duties as he made his first start since opening day, and while there were some promising touches, he remained off the pace and out of sync with his teammates before subbing out in the 64th minute. Bruce Arena and his staff have questions to answer regarding their Mexican DP.
3. PORTER THE PRAGMATIST: Caleb Porter mixed up his formation in search of more solidity, bringing veteran Jack Jewsbury back alongside Diego Chara in deep midfield in a 4-2-3-1 look seen for much of last season. It wasn't quite as fluid going forward, but it did provide more cover for the back four, who were cruising for a clean sheet until Borchers' bad luck.
- LA: Friday at Houston (7 pm ET, UniMás)
- POR: Wednesday vs. Dallas (10:30 pm ET, MLS LIVE)