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Timbers drop Dynamo for fourth straight win

Fanendo Adi Portland Houston 06202015

Photo by Jaime Valdez / USA Today Sports Images


As summer starts to head up, so are the Portland Timbers.

A Max Urruti goal in the first half, and Gaston Fernandez penalty kick in the second half to a 2-0 victory against the Houston Dynamo at Providence Park on Saturday.The win, the team’s fourth straight, moved the Timbers into third place in the Western Conference, with Caleb Porter’s defense posting its third shutout in four matches.

Urruti put the Timbers in front in the 34th minute, heading in a free kick from the left to end the first half on a high note. The home side rode that momentum in the second half, capitalizing through a Fernandez penalty kick.

After a rough-and-tumble U.S. Open Cup game against the Seattle Sounders earlier in the week, the Timbers endured another evening of aggressive play. A combined 29 fouls were committed throughout the match, and the Dynamo threw players forward late to apply heavy pressure.

The visitors were only able to put a single shot on target, while three shots were blocked. They also had to endure a pair of decisions that didn’t go their way, but had a major impact on the result.

The Dynamo thought they had the lead in the 16th minute when Raul Rodriguez headed in a corner kick, completely unmarked. He was so free in the box because Ricardo Clark blocked off Jorge Villafana from marking the defender, a move the referee deemed illegal to give the Timbers a free kick instead.

It was a somewhat controversial call, but it became even more crucial later. Again in the middle of things, Villafana curled in a free kick from the left onto the head of Urruti. The Argentine forward guided his shot inside the far post for a 1-0 lead as the Timbers kicked things up a notch.

The Dynamo spent the next 10 minutes repelling Portland attacks, and Tyler Deric was called on to save them. Alvas Powell moved forward down the right and put in a cross, but it veered close enough to the Dynamo net to cause issues.

Deric threw up a hopeful palm, and it was enough to deflect the ball away.

The Timbers continued to push forward, and in the 60th minute they were rewarded once again. David Horst was called for hauling down Norberto Paparatto in the box, a penalty strongly contested by the Dynamo. It did nothing to disrupt Fernandez, who sent the spot kick into the upper right-hand corner for a 2-0 lead.

Houston’s best chance to answer came with about 10 minutes left. Somehow a pass in from the left made it past three Timbers defenders and fell to second half substitute Alex inside the goal area, but he was unable to get off a solid shot.

Minutes later, DaMarcus Beasley raced in behind the Timbers defense to latch onto a through ball, but his sliding shot sailed well high of the Timbers goal. Clark later nearly had a spectacular goal, juggling the ball inside the penalty area before trying an overhead kick as he was falling down. The shot bounced off of the cross bar, much to the relief of Timbers goalkeeper Adam Kwarasey.

A tough test on the road against the Los Angeles Galaxy next awaits the Timbers on Wednesday. The Dynamo next face rivals FC Dallas on Friday.


  1. Please stop it already. The Timbers have never had a reputation for diving. Toledo is a terrible ref, no doubt, but any supposed diving had nothing to do with the outcome of that match. Timbers outplayed Dynamo, simple as that. The PK against Horst was a PK. In fact, Timbers should have had a PK earlier when Villafana was bowled over as he approached the goal with ball at his feet.

    • I’m assuming you saw the game in person. That would be the only way you could make either of those arguments. Watch it on tv, you will be disgusted. I agree that Portland hasn’t had a reputation for diving.

  2. I look at the league with orange goggles. I also envy teams like Seattle and Portland cause of their strong fan base. I liked porterball when he coached the U.S. team. But,… He coaches a bunch of divers now. In front of a home crowd, I counted 13 dives from which they received no cards and they were rewarded a penalty and 3 free kicks and discounted a dynamo 1st goal.
    Maybe houston has been spoiled by coaches who just don’t have time for that (minus Ali Moreno), but diving is a big reason Americans don’t like soccer. Americans have a never die, play through it, hard nose attitude and the diving aspect of soccer just sucks.
    Karma always wins… Just ask Rafa Marquez who still dreams “no fue penal”

    • I think Porter is overrated, his Akron teams were stacked with U20s and he won once. His U23 team was pretty talented and he neither cobbled together a defense nor could he beat Canada or close out ES. I think he has an eye for players enough to create a squad but not the chops to man-manage it to trophy levels.

      Porter’s team was chopping players like mad here and it just didn’t work. It comes across to me like they know how to bend the rules. I don’t think scrappy is a winning strategy for silverware but obviously it works some nights.

  3. The Dynamo shoot themselves in the foot by constructing a squad with middling international players from concacaf countries every season

    Concacaf internationals just miss too much of the MLS season.

    Its frustrating watching our most important players miss so much time, messing around with Copa America and other international duties.

    Barnes, Taylor, Boniek-Garcia and Garrido

    and whats most frustrating is watching guys like Brad Davis and DMB miss time with the USMNT when they are clearly not impact players at that level anymore.

    it’s better to rely on decent South American or European players who can make a huge impact at this level but aren’t good enough for their respective countries.

    • All due respect but the Golden Age Dynamo of 2006-2007 had internationals starting all over the place (DeRo, Ching, Moreno, Barrett, Onstad, Davis, Clark, on and on) and even future international callups and capped players like Wondo, Holden, and Ashe coming off the bench. So I really disagree.

      The issue is that they have never matched that SJ legacy team on talent, particularly in the attack. The old SJ-legacies could get points going through the motions, endure international callups, and still get a solid seed. The problem is the more recent versions, even the finalists, have sputtering offenses that can’t score in big games, and inconsistent defenses. It’s a basic talent level issue, they just aren’t as good, and until they get much sharper GM work or spend more money, it’s not going to be the same as it was when they were handed a 2 time champion SJ team and with some minor tweaks and signings, extended it out for two more.


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