The Portland Timbers and FC Dallas played to a 1-1 draw on Saturday night, as the teams traded dramatic second half stoppage time goals. Marvin Loria drew and converted a penalty in the sixth minute of stoppage time, and Dallas equalized four minutes later via Diego Chara own goal off a corner kick.
With several Portland players still nursing injuries, Portland rolled out yet another adjusted lineup. It featured the same three center back setup from Wednesday, with Dairon Asprilla and Claudio Bravo manning the wings and Yimmi Chara and Jaroslaw Niezgoda leading the line.
Importantly, Portland had more offensive firepower on their bench tonight, in the form of the returned Eryk Williamson and the rotated Sebastian Blanco.
The first half was a sloppy affair, with neither team able to conjure much sustained attacking possession. The closest chances came when Paul Arriola pinged the post for the visitors, and Santiago Moreno had an attempt square on goal saved after a big run.
The whistle for halftime blew with the teams knotted at zeroes. Both sides seemed to be lacking that final bit of quality necessary to break things open.
Dallas came out the brighter of the two sides in the second half, and only through some more incredible goalkeeping from Aljaz Ivacic did Portland keep things level through the opening twenty minutes of the half.
Giovanni Savarese sought to jumpstart things by introducing Blanco, Williamson, and Zac McGraw midway through the second frame.
However, it didn’t seem to provide the spark that was needed for the Timbers. Portland couldn’t manage any sustained offense in the second half, ending the game with just five shots on target. In fact, it was Dallas who managed the clearer of the chances, but couldn’t convert any of them.
However, affairs turned in second half stoppage time. Marvin Loria earned a penalty kick in the 96th minute, and after converting his own rebound Portland looked to have wrapped up all three points.
But things turned yet again with the very last kick of the game, as a 100th minute FC Dallas corner kick was deflected into Portland’s net by Diego Chara.
Affairs ended 1-1, in what was a brutal last second concession after Portland looked to have won the game.
- 1’ Bill Tuiloma tried to get the fireworks started early with a rip from distance, but it sailed over the bar.
- 19’ A half-chance for the Timbers, as a long switch from Tuiloma found the head of Claudio Bravo, who nodded it back across the six-yard box. But no one in green was there to meet it, and the ball was cleared.
- 23’ Dairon Asprilla collided with Sebastian Lletget in midair, and Asprilla was shown a yellow card for... reasons.
- 28’ Paul Arriola came close to opening the scoring for the visitors, as he pounced on a turnover and pinged a shot off the far post after racing past the Portland backline.
- 35’ Santiago Moreno tried to go coast-to-coast, collecting a header from Bravo and racing down the field. He took the shot himself, but it was easily collected by Maarten Paes.
- 37’ Asprilla fizzed a ball into the box after some nice work from David Ayala, but it was cleared before it could find the boot of a Timbers’ attacker.
- 44’ Larrys Mabiala, proving to us that age is nothing but a number, chased down Alan Velasco and made a superbly timed challenge to snuff out a breakaway opportunity.
Halftime came with nothing to separate the sides. Portland enjoyed a slight edge in possession, and put three of their six shots on target. Dallas could only muster three shots, none of them on frame.
- 45’ Portland brought on Marvin Loria at half for Claudio Bravo, with the Argentine still nursing a hamstring injury suffered earlier in the week and not quite at full fitness.
- 48’ Aljaz Ivacic was called into action early in the second half, as he swatted away a shot (or maybe a cross?) from a tight angle.
- 50’ It was followed up two minutes later with yet another sharp moment from Ivacic, as he pushed away a low shot through traffic that Portland eventually cleared.
- 60’ Ivacic was the hero again for the Timbers as he somehow got a fingertip to a Paul Arriola chance, after the Dallas winger somehow ghosted in behind an unawares Timbers defense and was one-on-one with the ‘keeper.
- 64’ Big triple change for the Timbers, as they sought to find some more attacking spark: Zac McGraw, Eryk Williamson, and Sebastian Blanco replaced Larrys Mabiala, David Ayala, and Jaroslaw Niezgoda respectively.
- 67’ Jesus Ferreira had the ball in the back of the net, but Portland was saved by the grace of the offside flag going up to negate the goal.
- 76’ Marvin Loria had a close range shot saved by Paes after the first real moment of attacking interplay from the Timbers in the half.
- 78’ Williamson was shown a yellow card for stopping a promising looking Dallas attack.
- 83’ Tuiloma sent a looping header off a corner kick high and over the bar.
- 83’ Portland brought on Nathan Fogaca for Yimmi Chara in a final bid for some offense.
- 84’ A Dallas attacker again got past the Portland backline, and this time it was Velasco to miss a golden opportunity. He sent his chip attempt over bar, after Tuiloma did just enough to rush back and close down the space.
- 90’+2 Into five minutes of stoppage time, Loria found the ball with space in the box, and his shot was blocked by Matt Hedges... illegally. After video review it was adjudged that the ball hit the outstretched arm of Hedges on the way through, and the Timbers were awarded a penalty kick in the dying minutes of the game.
- 90’+6 GOAL TIMBERS 1-0. Marvin Loria stepped to the spot to take the kick. His initial kick was saved by Paes, but the ‘keeper spilled the rebound. Loria was first to the ball, and followed his own miss to power home the rebound. After a night of offensive inefficacy, Portland had miraculously found a goal.
- 90’+10 Goal FC Dallas 1-1. On the very last kick of the game, Dallas swung in a corner kick. The ball deflected off the head of Diego Chara, and it unfortunately flew past Ivacic and into Portland’s own net.
The final whistle blew, and Portland had to settle for a 1-1 draw. Their offense did not show up on the night, but the Timbers thought they had nabbed a win with the late penalty kick.
But instead, the Timbers had to stomach yet another disappointing home draw. They now stand at ten straight games unbeaten and rise into seventh place, but they have only won two of their last six games and are still wallowing right around the playoff line. As the scrap in the Western Conference heats up, Portland remains treading water among the many teams fighting for playoff positions.
The Timbers are next in action next Saturday, when they travel to Canada to face Toronto FC on August 13 at 4:30 PM Pacific.