Timbers edge Union 2-1 to improve playoff chances
The Portland Timbers won their fourth straight home match on a rainy Saturday, a 2-1 win over the Philadelphia Union in a match where all the scoring was in the first seven minutes of the second half. Diego Valeri and Fanendo Adi both redirected in Darren Mattocks crosses for the Timbers goals, while Chris Pontius had the lone Philadelphia goal.
Each team would produce a few good chances in the first half, with the best chances for the visitors being a Fabien Herbers run into the box that forced a reaction save from Timbers goalkeeper Jake Gleeson (who also took an inadvertent boot to the face on the play), and a CJ Sapong shot off the right post. The best Timbers chance in the first half was a cross from Alvas Powell that perfectly found the head of Fanendo Adi, but his header slipped just wide of the right post, so the match was scoreless at the half.
It would take less than 20 seconds for the Timbers to take the lead in the second half when Darren Mattocks was able to beat Union defender Keegan Rosenberry cleanly near the line, and a low cross was cleanly redirected into the net by Diego Valeri for the 1-0 Timbers lead.
It would not last long though when less than a minute after the restart, Philadelphia leveled the score when Herbers made a deep run and dropped the ball back to Chris Pontius, whose blast from near the top of the box beat Gleeson cleanly and slipped inside the right post to level the score at 1-1.
But five minutes later it would be a near-duplicate effort by Mattocks that would give the Timbers the lead, when Mattocks once again faked out Rosenberry to get a clean low pass into the box, this time finding Adi whose slight redirection cleanly beat Philadelphia goalkeeper Andre Blake to put the Timbers up 2-1.
Union defender Josh Yaro would be sent off in the 85th minute on a second yellow, and the Timbers nearly widened the lead in stoppage time when Blake made a great save on a Mattocks shot, but the Timbers would hold on for the 2-1 win and move up to 5th place in the Western Conference with four matches remaining.
Jake Gleeson had seven saves for the Timbers while Andre Blake recorded four saves for the visitors.
MATCH RECAP | Portland Timbers 2, Philadelphia Union 1 at PortlandTimbers.com