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Timbers look okay, but still show issues in 2-1 loss to FC Dallas

MLS: Portland Timbers at FC Dallas Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

The Timbers looked better than their previous outing, but were still ultimately unable to break their losing streak against FC Dallas on a rainy evening in Frisco, Texas.

FC Dallas put the ball in the back of the net in the ninth minute after a bad backpass from Jeremy Ebobisse and some scrambling in the Timbers’ defense. At first the goal was disallowed for offside, but upon video review, the decision was overturned and Dallas took an early 1-0 lead.

The Timbers responded to the goal with extended pressure over the next ten minutes, sending in a number of crosses from right wingback Jorge Moreira, but were ultimately unable to find a reward before Dallas re-found their footing in the match. Dallas had the next dangerous chance in the 26th minute after Barrios was played into space in the box and placed a hard-hit half volley on target, only for Jeff Attinella to rise to the occasion and make the save.

Dallas kept up the pressure, almost capitalizing on a bad touch from Larrys Mabiala in the 34th minute to create a shot for Jesus Ferreira from just outside the box which drifted just wide of goal.

Jeff Attinella was tested again in the 43rd minute when Barrios cut inside and put a powerful shot on target from the left side. Attinella was able to make the diving save at the far post, however, and Dallas was unable to capitalize on the ensuing corner.

The Timbers created the first chance of the second half after some nice interplay in the midfield found Moreira’s run down the right flank. The right back dribbled past a defender, then cut inside and took a shot in the 47th minute which was deflected out for a corner.

In the 51st minute, Diego Chara earned himself his obligatory yellow card, and the first of the game, after a sloppy back pass from Julio Cascante. FC Dallas sent the ensuing free kick into the box, but it was cleared out without incident.

The Timbers continued to pressure the Dallas goal, with a string of plays including a well-placed shot from Sebastian Blanco, but it wasn’t to be. In the 59th minute, Dallas attacked quickly down the right flank, sending in a well-placed cross which was deflected on target by Larrys Mabiala. Luckily, Jeff Attinella was able to prevent the own-goal and knock the ball off to the side of goal. However, Aranguiz got to it first and was tripped by Moreira after his touch, resulting in a penalty for Dallas which Reto Ziegler converted into the top right corner. 2-0 for Dallas.

In the 67th minute, however, the Timbers stuck back. Sebastian Blanco received the ball on the left and dribbled to the edge of the box where he chipped a ball across goal and found a diving Cristhian Paredes, who managed to head the ball on goal at the near post, beating Jesse Gonzalez and pulling the Timbers back within one.

Just after the Timbers’ goal, Gio Saverese brought on Diego Valeri and Dairon Asprilla for Paredes and Cascante, shifting the visitors’ formation to the more familiar 4-2-3-1. The substitutions added some attacking vigor for the Timbers, creating a number of chances in the ensuing minutes.

The remaining minutes of the match were all Timbers, with the visitors getting down the field time and time again. In the 84th minute, Diego Valeri sent in a lofted free kick from the left side which found Bill Tuiloma’s rising head. Tuiloma headed the ball hard off the pitch, but too close to Jesse Gonzalez, who easily made the save.

In the 88th minute, the Timbers made a final attacking sub, bringing on youngster Tomas Conechny on for Andres Flores. The Timbers continued to press throughout the four minutes of stoppage time, and after a corner kick late in stoppage time had a penalty shout after a Bill Tuiloma header was brought down by a Ryan Hollingshead’s hand. While the infraction was originally waved off by the Referee, as soon as play stopped he went to the monitor to look at it again. However, after review, no penalty was given.

After the review, Dairon Asprilla had a shot from inside the box deflected, then Bill Tuiloma went down in the box under pressure. The referee once again waved off the penalty shout, and shortly after, the final whistle blew, ending the match 2-1 in favor of FC Dallas.

The Timbers are back in action next Saturday at 4:30 PM when they visit Caleb Porter and the Columbus Crew.