The Portland Timbers finished off their 2015 preseason today with a 1-0 win over Norway's Stabaek. Coming off a pair of frustrating results in the first two matches of the 2015 Simple Invitational, a 1-0 loss to the Vancouver Whitecaps and a 1-1 draw against the Chicago Fire, the Timbers will be happy to carry some momentum into next weekend's home opener.
The first half of the match was all Fanendo Adi as the Timbers' target forward held off defenders, dominated the aerial game, and generally linked up well with Darlington Nagbe in the center of the attack.
Adi was rewarded for his solid play in the 31' when the Timbers broke quickly down the pitch. Nagbe carried the ball into the Stabaek half before checking his run then sending the ball down the left flank for the overlapping run of Jorge Villafana. Outside of the Stabaek box, Villafana whipped in a low cross that curled invitingly to the outstretched foot of Adi, only needing a touch from the big man to be redirected past keeper Mande Sayouba and into the back of the net.
Adi's goal was not the only chance of the half, however, as the Timbers went close on several other occasions; the closest being Jack Jewsbury's 14' free kick from just outside the box that clanged off the inside of the post and bounced out, preventing what looked like a sure-fire goal for the Timbers.
Stabaek, who out shot the Timbers 8-4 in the first half, only had one real chance that scared Timbers' fans: a bomb from just outside the box that looked to be dipping on goal until a fingertip save from Adam Kwarasey pushed it just over the bar.
The second half saw the Timbers continue their control of the match, holding possession for the majority of the 45' and frustrate the few chances that Stabaek was able to generate.
While Adi was dominant in the first half, the 62' substitutes Maximiliano Urruti and Gaston Fernandez also gave Stabaek fits as they put consistent pressure on the visitors' back line.
Despite the Timbers' control of the match, however, they were unable to get a second goal and the match ran out 1-0.
The Timbers' next match with be the 2015 season opener next Saturday against Real Salt Lake.