Galaxy next for Timbers
During his news conference to preview Wednesday's match against the LA Galaxy, Portland Timbers coach Giovanni Savarese asked the question that everyone has about his team.
"How can you be probably the best defensive team in the tournament at Orlando and then come home and all of a sudden concede too many goals?" Savarese asked.
"It is not a tactical thing. It is more from mentality. We all need to be part of fixing that part, starting with me."
The Timbers get a chance to steady things on Wednesday in a third consecutive match at Providence Park. Again, no fans will be allowed because of COVID-19 restrictions.
The opponent for the 7:30 p.m. match is a Galaxy team that has won its two matches since the restart. Both were rivalry matches, a 2-0 win over Los Angeles FC and a come-from-behind 3-2 win over San Jose.
Portland allowed a total of seven goals in consecutive disappointing results: a 3-0 loss to Seattle and a 4-4 draw with Real Salt Lake, with five of the seven opponents goals coming late in the match. That after allowing eight goals in seven games on the way to the championship at the MLS is Back tournament.
Diego Valeri said Portland's defensive success at Orlando "was a combination of strategy, style and the efforts of the players."
In the loss to RSL, Valeri said the Timbers paid for "losing duals in some areas where at this level you get punished. That, for me, is a big thing.
"It's something were going to fix."
Portland could get winger Yimmi Chara back for this match. Savarese said Chara will be among the 20 players dressed. Only rookie Blake Bodily (thigh) and Dairon Asprilla (out for season, knee) are Timbers listed as out.
Wednesday's match will be televised by KPDX/FOX 12-Plus with radio on 750 AM.
This is the Timbers final home game of this first six-game phase of the MLS restart. Portland visits Seattle on Sunday, plays at LAFC Sept. 13 and at San Jose Sept. 16.
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