Ten Men Can Be Lonely on a Pitch But Timbers Made It Work — Nearly
Midfielder Sebastián Blanco registers second goal of the season and the 1-1 result against FC Dallas marked head coach Giovanni Savarese’s first point as a manager in Major League Soccer.
Soccer New: Soccer action game recap.
Continuing their extended road trip to start the 2018 season, the Portland Timbers battled FC Dallas to a 1-1 draw before 13,851 fans at Toyota Stadium on Saturday afternoon. Midfielder Sebastián Blanco recorded his second goal of the season in the draw, while forward Fanendo Adi registered his second assist in 2018, as Portland secured its first point of the 2018 MLS regular season.
Facing FC Dallas
With Saturday’s 1-1 draw, the Timbers are now unbeaten in their last three league matches (1-0-2) played against FC Dallas, dating back to April 29, 2017. Additionally, with Blanco’s finish in the match, Portland has scored in 15 consecutive games against FC Dallas, dating back to July 21, 2012.
After recovering from an injury sustained during the MLS Western Conference Semifinals against the Houston Dynamo on Oct. 30, 2017, midfielder Diego Chara made his first appearance of the season in Saturday’s match. With the appearance, Chara also recorded his 205th start in MLS, which ranks as the most starts in club history across all eras (since 1975). Additionally, defender Bill Tuiloma made his MLS debut with the Timbers in Saturday’s match, playing 90 minutes in the 1-1 draw.
With a finish in Saturday’s game, Blanco recorded his second goal of the 2018 season, while also notching his second career goal against FC Dallas. Joining the club ahead of the 2017 MLS season, Blanco scored his first career MLS goal in a 2-2 draw against FC Dallas on April 29, 2017.
Down a man
Portland was forced to play with 10 men for the final 15 minutes of the match after midfielder Lawrence Olum was issued a second yellow card for a handball in the 75th minute.
In the 35th minute, the Timbers came close to opening the scoring when Adi’s cross from the left wing picked out unmarked midfielder Christian Paredes, whose header flashed wide of the far post.
FC Dallas took the lead moments later after midfielder Roland Lamah’s effort from the top of the box was placed into the lower left corner of the net to give the home side a 1-0 edge in the 36th minute.
Three minutes later, Paredes’ right-footed shot from outside the box forced FC Dallas goalkeeper Jimmy Mauer into a strong save in the 39th minute, while midfielder Diego Valeri’s long-range shot was saved by Mauer just before the halftime break.
The Timbers leveled the score two minutes into the start of the second half when Adi laid the ball off to Blanco on the right wing. Cutting inside onto his left foot, Blanco curled his effort from the edge of the 18-yard box past the outstretched arms of Maurer and into the far corner of the net in the 48th minute.
After receiving the ball from Blanco, Adi blasted a long-range effort from midfield, forcing Maurer to make a solid save in the 58th minute.
Continuing to press forward in the second half, Blanco played a quick pass to Alvas Powell, who made an overlapping run, with the defender hitting a low shot from a tight angle, forcing Maurer into a kick save at the near post in the 68th minute.
The Timbers nearly scored a second goal in the 84th minute when Powell skipped past a FC Dallas defender on the edge of the 18-yard box, before beating three more defenders and placing his low shot inches past the far post.
DAL: Lamah (Hayes), 36
POR: Blanco (Adi), 47
DAL: Hedges (Caution), 8
POR: Olum (Caution), 44
DAL: Lamah (Caution), 75
POR: Olum (Caution, Ejection), 75
POR: Chara (Caution), 90+6
Source: Portland Timbers press release