Portland Timbers 3, Vancouver Whitecaps FC 1 | 2019 MLS Match Recap
The game-winner came in the 55th minute via Portland midfielder Marvin Loria, who smashed a left-footed strike from 25 yards into the far-side netting. It was the Costa Rican’s second goal of the year.
Loria’s shot was the third of three bangers, as Portland opened the scoring in the 28th minute via winger Sebastian Blanco. The Argentine made it 1-0 by ripping home a swerving, powerful strike from distance that Vancouver goalkeeper Maxime Crepeau couldn’t keep out.
While Portland nabbed all three points, the teams entered halftime knotted at 1-1 after Whitecaps’ forward Theo Bair bagged a golazo for his first MLS tally. Moving away from goal, the Homegrown Player, 19, hit a volley over his shoulder that dipped over Steve Clark into the far-side netting.
As Vancouver chased the match late, Portland made it 3-1 in the 90th minute via Jeremy Ebobisse. The striker, playing centrally for Brian Fernandez, capped off a counter-attack after being slipped through by Tomas Conechny.
Bair’s highlight-reel strike helped to suppress a worrisome moment for Vancouver, as Designated Player Ali Adnan departed in the 27th minute with a left adductor injury. The Iraqi left back, in the 20th minute, had previously headed a Diego Valeri shot off the line.
The Whitecaps thought they had an equalizer in the 57th minute, but Yordy Reyna’s chipped effort was ruled back due to offside.
- 28' – POR – Sebastian Blanco | WATCH
- 38' – VAN – Theo Bair | WATCH
- 55' – POR – Marvin Loria | WATCH
- 90' – POR – Jeremy Ebobisse | WATCH
- THE BIG PICTURE: Portland end the regular season with 11 of 12 games at Providence Park, so it’s a friendly environment as their push up the Western Conference standings continues. But it was imperative to get all three points against last-place Vancouver, especially after back-to-back losses against Minnesota United in the league and U.S. Open Cup. Vancouver, meanwhile, continue their up-and-down season. Their two-game unbeaten run is now over, and not for a lack of chances generated.
- MOMENT OF THE MATCH: Could it ever be anything else? Theo Bair opened his MLS account in dramatic fashion, lasering home a strike that was reminiscent of Eric Hassli’s 2011 goal for Vancouver against the Seattle Sounders. The 19-year-old simply let instincts kick in.
- MAN OF THE MATCH: He didn’t record a goal or an assist, but Renzo Zambrano was ever-reliable for Portland in the center of midfield. Paired alongside Diego Chara, the Venezuelan went 90 minutes for the sixth time this year, making few missteps in possession or defensively.