Portland Timbers 1, Vancouver Whitecaps FC 2 | 2018 MLS Match Recap
The Cascadia rivalry always seems to bring out the best in its competitors; on Saturday night at Providence Park, it brought out the best in the Vancouver Whitecaps FC, who found two first-half goals and held on for a 2-1 win, getting to deal the Portland Timbers their first home loss of 2018 and break their 15-match unbeaten streak.
The Whitecaps' opening goal, in the 14th minute, came on a set piece launched from behind midfield, with Kendall Waston delivering a precise pass to Kei Kamara, who headed past a hard-charging (into no-man's land) Jeff Attinella, and into an empty net.
Waston appeared to take as well as give by fouling Diego Valeri in the box in the 40th minute, but Valeri pushed his attempted PK wide. Less than three minutes later, a Whitecaps goalkick led to Brek Shea sending a cross that Cristian Techera headed home to put the Whitecaps up 2-0.
In the second half, Stefan Marinovic stopped multiple shots in front of a loud Timbers Army throng to preserve the Whitecaps' lead. Valeri was able to make up for his missed PK with a made one in the 71st, after Sebastian Blanco drew a foul. But despite the Timbers' pressing and nearly eight minutes of stoppage time, they weren't able to find the equalizer to keep their dual streaks going.
- 14' – VAN – Kei Kamara | WATCH
- 43' – VAN – Cristian Techera | WATCH
- 71' – POR – Diego Valeri (PK) | WATCH
- THE BIG PICTURE: The Whitecaps' win puts them just two points below the playoff line behind sixth-place Real Salt Lake. With results in their last two matches, maybe they're starting the run they need to make their push into the playoff mix? The Timbers, had they won, were on a course for first place (with a game in hand over FC Dallas); they're now slightly off that, but could still have the #1 seed in the West when the dust settles.
- MOMENT OF THE MATCH: The Techera goal, coming so soon after the Valeri PK miss, was essentially a two-goal swing just before the halftime whistle.
- MAN OF THE MATCH: Marinovic's seven saves — including a late one on a Valeri free kick — allowed Vancouver to preserve the win, bolster its playoff hopes, and keep all three teams in Cascadia Cup contention parked at three points each.