The Portland Timbers fell 3-1 on the road to Toronto FC, ending their ten-game unbeaten run. Jonathan Osorio opened the scoring for the hosts in the first half, and Josecarlos Van Rankin momentarily brought Portland level midway through the second half. But the quality of Toronto’s designed players showed through, as Lorenzo Insigne and Federico Bernardeschi scored late to topple the Timbers in Toronto.
Portland traveled to Canada with a full complement of healthy players, although many of their recently injured players didn’t start. Claudio Bravo got the start, and Eryk Williamson and Cristhian Paredes started the game on the bench.
The first half proceeded as one might have expected, with Toronto dictating affairs and providing the most of the attacking pressure. The attacking duo of Lorenzo Insigne and Federico Bernardeschi was a lot for Portland’s defense to handle, and as the half went on, they found more and more space.
That space was capitalized on in the final five minutes of the first half — and it wasn’t the Italians, but rather the Canadians who were the difference. Richie Laryea found Jonathan Osorio in space in the box, and the midfielder slotted home the game’s opening goal.
Portland went into the break down a goal and bereft of any kind of sustained offensive opportunities.
In the second half, ignited by the introduction of Eryk Williamson and Dairon Asprilla, Portland started to find some more consistent offense. It paid off in the 73rd minute, when a flowing Timbers counter ended with Josecarlos Van Rankin tallying his first Portland Timbers goal.
The good vibes were short-lived. Both Insigne and Bernardeschi netted late in the second half to stretch the lead and ultimately give the hosts all three points, ending Portland’s ten-game unbeaten run.
- 7’ Lorenzo Insigne wiggled his way free to get off the first shot on target of the game, but Aljaz Ivacic was there to collect.
- 13’ Lorenzo Insigne showed his quality early, slipping a pretty through ball to spring Federico Bernardeschi into the box. Ivacic did well to come off his line and stonewall the chance.
- 14’ Lukas MacNaughton is shown the first yellow card of the game, after raking Sebastian Blanco’s leg on a late tackle.
- 22’ Insigne again showed his quality, nearly scoring an Olimpico, which pinged the crossbar with a shot straight off of a corner kick.
- 25’ Closest scoring chance thus far for the hosts, as Jayden Nelson weaved into the box. His initial shot was blocked by Bill Tuiloma, and then the follow up from Insigne was blocked by Ivacic.
- 33’ First real half-chance for the Timbers. Blanco pinged a great ball forward for Niezgoda. Jaro couldn’t quite get to it in the box, and Alex Bono collected.
- 41’ Goal Toronto 1-0. The hosts’ sustained pressure finally paid off, as two Canadian internationals connected for the opener. Richie Laryea drove to the byline past Bravo and cut towards the box. His cut back to the penalty spot found an unmarked Jonathan Osorio, who redirected the ball first time past Ivacic with authority.
- 44’ Ivacic did well to keep the deficit at one, palming away a curling Insigne shot at full extension in the dying seconds of the half.
The first half ended with Portland trailing and struggling to get back into the game. Toronto fired off 12 shots in the first half, putting half of them on frame. The Timbers could only manage a single shot, off-target.
- 46’ Ivacic immediately called into action as he dove to punch away an Insigne shot he saw late. The follow-up was cleared off the line by Tuiloma.
- 55’ At almost an hour into the game, the Timbers registered their first shot on target. Yimmi Chara had the ball in front of the net after some nice interplay with Santiago Moreno, but his shot was saved by Bono.
- 64’ Double-sub for the Timbers: Dairon Asprilla made his 150th regular season MLS appearance by coming on for Niezgoda, and Eryk Williamson replaced David Ayala.
- 67’ Two more yellow cards in quick succession for the hosts, with Mavinga and Osorio shown cautions for late challenge.
- 70’ Ivacic with another big stop, as he sprinted forward to stonewall Ayo Akinola, after the Toronto forward was flicked through behind Portland’s defense by Bernardeschi.
- 72’ Ivacic again with a big save, as he palmed away a shot from distance. Dude is making a habit of big saves.
- 73’ GOAL TIMBERS 1-1. Eryk Williamson sparked a Timbers counter by playing through Yimmi Chara. The younger Chara brother cut inside and found Blanco at the top of the box, and Seba flicked the ball onwards for Josecarlos Van Rankin in space. The defender took his time, and then placed the ball in the back of the net at the far post for his first Portland Timbers goal.
The buildup, the finish— Portland Timbers (@TimbersFC) August 14, 2022
What a way to mark your first Josecarlos pic.twitter.com/LEGz4240GC
- 79’ Goal Toronto 2-1. The hosts answered back quickly. Michael Bradley found Lorenzo Insigne in the box with a chip over the top. Insigne collected the ball well, and then volleyed home his first goal at home for his new team, restoring Toronto’s advantage.
- 83’ Goal Toronto 3-1. After Ivacic made another too-shelf save on Akinola, Federico Bernardeschi tucked home Toronto’s third goal off the recycled ball, putting the game out of reach for the Timbers and netting the hosts all three points.
The whistle for full-time eventually blew, the home fans celebrated, and Portland left the pitch tasting defeat for the first time in more than two months.
Portland will have the chance to start another run next Sunday, August 21, when they face a second consecutive away day at Sporting Kansas City. Kickoff is set for 4:30 p.m Pacific.