The Portland Timbers managed to continue their undefeated streak alive (albeit outside of regular season MLS play) with an impressive 3-2 win over FC Dallas. While the game's stream was terrible and figuring out what was happened took no small amount of effort, it was nice to see the Timbers manage to play as confidently as we've come to expect from them in recent months.
As usual, yesterday we held a vote on how each player performed. Here are the results:
(NOTE: The ratings are on a 10-point scale rounded to the nearest whole number.)
Donovan Ricketts - 5
Ricketts was at an 8 or 9, but when you set the ball, volleyball style, to the opposing striker in the 6 yard box, that costs at least 2 two integers. - Unknown
Stacey: That guy who did the weird volleyball set instead of catching that ball and later stood rooted to the ground while Dallas nearly equalized to send the game into extra time? Yeah, I have simply decided that was not Donovan Ricketts, because no way would the goalkeeper who has been making monster saves these past several games do something so baffling. Whoever that guy was, he had a good game in goal up until the 86th minute, when he made the end of the match way more tense than it needed to be.
Ryan Miller - 5
Ryan Miller did his best impression of a traffic cone, which was so good I bumped him from a 1 to a 2. In his defense Castillio does that to pretty much everyone, but still. - ledjom
Andy: Not a great game for Miller. Clearly the weak link on the back line, he had trouble catching up to Fabian Castillo and even more difficulty corralling him. Thankfully his keeper bailed him out each time, or this game might have gone very differently.
Andrew Jean-Baptiste - 6
Geoff: The partnership between Kah and AJB continues to shine in AJB's performance. While it was hardly a perfect game for the youngster, his confidence is definitely beginning to appear in his play. That was no more apparent than it was against FC Dallas.
Pa Modou Kah - 7
Andy: Kah did well to cut out Dallas' crosses and neutralize Blas Perez's presence, but he made some questionable, possibly heat/fatigue-induced decisions at the end that led to one booking and very nearly another, leading him to be removed in favor of his countryman.
Jack Jewsbury - 6
Big credit to Jewsbury, kept up his concentration for the whole match and tracked his man all over the pitch. - Viggo
Andy: In stark contrast to Miller's performance on the other flank, JJ handled the equally speedy Jackson Goncalves with all the panache of a veteran MLSer. He got beat a couple of times, yes, but JJ's ability to use superior positioning and coordination with his teammates prevented Jackson from creating much from the wing.
Will Johnson - 6
Will was great at applying pressure and mid-field link ups all night but he unleashed several Palmer-Bombs that made me have terrible flash-backs. - Justin103
Stacey: The captain played with energy, especially after a tactical shift pushed him forward more in the midfield, but his feet seemed to have gone on vacation a little early as he completely shanked a few shots.
Diego Valeri - 7
Stacey: It's amazing now quickly Valeri can swing from anonymity to heroics. For most of the game, he was having trouble finding space and looked very much affected by the heat and the busy stretch of games. Then, suddenly, he was beating Dallas' offside trap to give the Timbers the lead.
Diego Chara - 7
Chara had a typical performance where he was overshadowed by the attacking players but made crucial interceptions time and time again. - Unknown
Geoff: Chara disrupted FC Dallas' midfield and forwards all night. He is actually probably one of the game's great unsung heroes at this point. Were he not there, I don't see how FC Dallas wouldn't dominate the game.
Darlington Nagbe - 9
Nagbe had a great game ... in the second half. What is great is how he used his "anger" to spur his energy but didn't allow it to make him out-of-control. His goal celebration said it all: coolly celebrating with his teammates and trotting back to the Timbers' half. All business. Lastly, the assist to Valeri was brilliant. He effectively took the game right away from Dallas. - seangates
Andy: Nagbe had his hands full dealing with Andrew Jacobson all day (or rather Jacobson had his hands full of Nagbe's shirt all day), but once he was freed from those clutches, Nagbe took matters into his own hands.
Ryan Johnson - 6
Andy: It's been a while since we've seen Johnson in the starting lineup, but he showed no rust nor lack of familiarity with his teammates, linking up very well with Valeri and Wallace in the rare moments of the first half when the ball was at his end of the pitch. That he was replaced by Piquionne early in the second half resulted more from a shift in tactics than a referendum on his performance.
Rodney Wallace - 6
Geoff: Kind of a quiet night for Wallace after his performance against the Colorado Rapids. While he was able to cause some havoc on the left, it was clear that FC Dallas' defenders did their homework on him.
Frederic Piquionne - 7
Poaching that pass was a veteran move, and not the only one we from Freddy once he came off the bench. My new favorite phrase is "PiquiOWNED." - Unknown
Geoff: It takes a sharp veteran mind to know when to pounce on a goal like that as not every forward would even have the wherewithal to pressure at that moment. Piquionne, luckily, did know. And because of his instinct the Timbers came out with a win.
Ben Zemanski - 6
Geoff: Typically substitute performance for Zemanski. He didn't do anything too big for the team, but his calming presence and versatility helped see the game out.
Futty Danso - N/A
Geoff: As per our player ratings policy, Futty did not put in enough minutes to warrant a score.