In five previous matches this season the Portland Timbers have not once looked good against Real Salt Lake. Sunday's 1-0 loss to RSL was no different as the Timbers fought to climb their way out of their two goal deficit, but could not find any purchase. Still, the Timbers struggled heroicly and several performances stood out.
Here are our picks for the Man of the Match against RSL. Let us know who you thought the honor should go to in the poll below.
Michael: Darlington Nagbe
One of the few players to put in a good shift throughout Sunday night's game, Nagbe was influential from the area usually occupied by Diego Valeri. On a night where the Timbers needed to win by at least two and recorded just two shots on target, Nagbe at least did his part in helping create some opportunities for others with several key passes early in the second half as the Timbers tried to climb back into the series. Unfortunately for Nagbe and Portland, one strong performance was nowhere near enough.
Stacey: Darlington Nagbe
Nagbe was definitely the most dangerous player on the attack for the Timbers and set himself and his teammates up for some quality chances they just couldn't quite take advantage of. He didn't quite either; even when the chance for a comeback was gone, Nagbe kept fighting for a goal.
Will: Futty Danso
Coming back after a rough outing against RSL, Futty was back to his old assured ways. Dealing with Robbie Findley and Devon Sandoval was a handful, but the longest-serving current Timber did so with aplomb. What really made Futty stand out, however, was his willingness to get forward and his faculty in front of the goal, where he put in both of the Timbers' waved-off goals.
There are our picks, but what are yours? Vote in the poll below and let us know why in the comments.