Portland Timbers 2, Toronto FC 0 | 2018 MLS Match Recap
Both teams were trying to balance squad rotation during a busy stretch with desperation for points, needing a win for their respective playoff hopes. In the end, home cooking won out, although it took a patient effort from the Timbers to break down TFC.
Portland nearly took the lead in the 57th minute, but a deflection sent it just wide of the far post. But the Timbers opened the scoring through an unlikely source shortly after the hour mark, as Zarek Valentin sent a terrific ball upfield to initiate the attack, and Diego Chara made a far-post run that paid off as he slotted home Sebastian Blanco's diagonal cross to score his first of the season.
- THE BIG PICTURE: The win for Portland not only snaps the losing run, but vaults them back above the playoff line. TFC, meanwhile, aren't out of playoff contention yet but their games in hand are almost used up at this point, and they still have plenty of work to do.
- MOMENT OF THE MATCH: Guzman's goal was a fantastic individual effort on both sides of the ball.
- MAN OF THE MATCH: With the Timbers needing a game-breaking play, Chara -- previously mooted this year as a possible MLS MVP candidate for his tenacious play as a defensive midfielder -- came up big with the go-ahead goal, his first of the season.