Onward, Rose City.
The Portland Timbers (3-3-0) defeated the LA Galaxy (4-2-0) at Providence Park Saturday afternoon, 3-0, thanks to a red card minutes before halftime which forced Los Angeles to play with 10 men for the entire second half.
In the 44th minute, LA's Derrick Williams committed a dangerous tackle against Portland's Andy Polo, resulting in Williams being ejected and Polo watching the second half on crutches.
“He’s not doing okay," said Timbers head coach Giovanni Savarese after the match. "Now he’s going to get evaluated. There’s going to be a process to understand exactly what happened. As of now, it doesn’t look great.
"It’s unfortunate when there’s a tackle like that — you don’t want to see that on the field and especially having players that then have to come out because of that situation. So right now, the most important part is hopefully that Polo can come back.”
With Polo watching from the sidelines, the Timbers scored three second-half goals: two from Felipe Mora (47th minute, 60th minute) and a penalty kick from Diego Valeri (69th minute).
“Before the red card it was a tie game," said Mora. "It was very hard to find spaces but after the red card we spoke at halftime and we knew we needed to be calm, patient, and wait for the right opportunities. Thankfully, after the first goal the game opened up a little bit more for us and we were able to get two more goals.”
Arguably more important for Portland than the goals, was the team recording a second consecutive clean sheet with Logan Ketterer in goal. Portand has him on loan from the USL's El Paso Locomotive FC after injuries decimated the keeper position within the Timbers.
"Good also from Logan [Ketterer]. Credit to him. I think at an important moment he gave us a very important save and has been very good for us so far," said Savarese after he raved about his team's willingness to ["sacrifice] for others in order to make sure that we cover every space."
Team captain Diego Valeri was satisfied with how Portland balanced attacking and defending its goal.
“Our strategy today was having me on top to create and overload the middle. We were very successful pressing in the first half. They use their center backs very well and they could penetrate to the middle sometimes, but we were able to compact the ball there," he said. "They didn’t create a lot in the first half, they didn’t assist Chicharito, they didn’t find [Sebastian] Lletget. That was very successful from us in the first half and obviously having an extra man on the field was easier for us to take advantage.”
With the win, the Timbers moved above the red line in the Western Conference into sixth place with nine points. Seattle leads the West with 16 points.
Next, Portland travels to Subaru Park to play the Philadelphia Union on Sunday, May 30th at 4:00 p.m PT on FS1.