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Best of MLS: Portland Timbers, Lassi Lappalainen, and more

The Portland Timbers made it back-to-back weekends in which they took down top competition in the Western Conference.

Giovanni Savarese’s side downed the L.A. Galaxy 4-0 on Saturday night behind strong performances from midfielders Cristhian Paredes, Diego Valeri, and goalkeeper Steve Clark.

Elsewhere, Lassi Lappalainen kicked off life in Montreal with a brace on his MLS debut. The Finnish playmaker scored a pair of goals against the Philadelphia Union in a 4-0 beatdown at Stade Saputo.

Here’s a look at the league’s best in Week 21:

Player of the Week

Lappalainen made an immediate impact for the Impact in his debut, helping the club to a 4-0 win at home. Not only did Lappalainen connect well with his new offensive teammates, he hopefully gave the Impact fans a taste of what to expect from him the rest of 2019.

Lappalainen beat out Paredes, Pedro Santos, and Carles Gil for Player of the Week honors.

Team of the Week

The Portland Timbers continued their rise up the West table with another impressive win.

A 4-0 trouncing of the L.A. Galaxy saw the Timbers run rampant against one of the better offenses in the league. Steve Clark made some huge saves for the Timbers, while Diego Valeri registered two points in his 200th appearance for the club.

With the win, Portland are holding onto seventh place and riding a seven-match unbeaten run in all competitions.

Portland edged the Montreal Impact, LAFC, and the San Jose Earthquakes for TOTW.

Goal of the Week

There were plenty of picks for Goal of the Week in MLS, but U.S. Men’s National Team striker Jozy Altidore’s took the cake.

Given room to set himself, Altidore rifled a right-footed shot into the corner of the net against FC Cincinnati. It was a beautiful strike from Altidore which Cincy goalkeeper Przemyslaw Tyton could do zero about.

Altidore now has nine goals in 13 league appearances this season.


  1. I know it’s purely subjective but curious what makes Altidores goal better then Timbers Paredes? Almost the same spot on the field and same corner but Paredes was in traffic with a one step strike.
    Although Valeri’s full sprint nutmeg and finish was pretty stellar!

    • 10 -12 yards and the ball is behind Altidore so he has to stop and put his back to goal where as Paredes has the ball played more to his feet. As you noted subjective Valeri for me has a case but his final shot is from pretty close but the overall body of work is impressive.


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