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Portland Timbers fight back from behind for 1-1 draw at Seattle Sounders

MLS: Portland Timbers at Seattle Sounders FC Jennifer Buchanan-USA TODAY Sports

The Portland Timbers played a typically contentious match against their arch-rivals the Seattle Sounders and emerged from the hostile confines of CenturyLink Field with a point in hand. Despite falling behind early, the Timbers were able to fight back and earn a 1-1 draw on the road.

The Sounders’ opener came in distressingly familiar fashion off an eighteenth minute corner kick, served into the box by Seattle No. 10 Nicolas Lodeiro. Dropping the ball in at the near post, it looked like Timbers keeper Jeff Attinella would snag it out of the air, but he was boxed out by Cristian Roldan as the ball was knocked down and bobbled between several players inside the box. As the two sides vied for the ball, it was Roldan who was able to finally get a boot to it, placing the ball past Attinella on the volley and giving the Sounders a 1-0 lead.

That lead would not survive the half, however, as the Timbers pushed forward in search of an equalizer and found one in first half stoppage time. On the break, Diego Valeri sent a chipped ball into the path of Darren Mattocks, making bursting run between Sounders defenders Roman Torres and Kelvin Leerdam. Mattocks chested the ball down and looked to be in on goal only for Leerdam to barge into him, sending Mattocks to the ground and prompting referee Mark Geiger to point to the penalty spot. This match it was Diego Valeri who stepped up for the Timbers, hitting a hard, well placed penalty that Stefan Frei could only watch as it splashed into the back of the net.

The Sounders came close with a pair of chances early in the second half, playing speedster Jordan Morris in on goal in the 47th and 56th minutes. Twice Morris found himself one on one with Attinella, twice he went for the low, placed shot, and twice Attinella stopped him cold, preserving the tie.

Neither team would be able to break the tie, despite chances for both sides, but the Sounders would get on the score sheet again in second half stoppage time, when full back Nouhou received his marching orders from Geiger. Bursting down the pitch, Nouhou skipped over a tackle from Valeri, then ran past Diego Chara, swinging his arm up and into Chara’s face in the process. There was no hesitation from Geiger in raising the red card seconds before the end of the match.

The Timbers are on the road again for their next match, traveling cross-country to take on New York City FC two weeks from now on September 9th.