Friday, July 30: Galaxy 4, Timbers 1
The goals: Rayan Reveloson converted a bicycle kick, driving a second ball from a Galaxy corner kick cleanly into the goal (1-0 Galaxy, 27th minute) in a Friday, July 30, game.
Jeremy Ebobisse scored with his left foot after feinting former Timber Jorge Villafana. Quick passes from Diego Valeri and Yimmi Chara set up the chance to tie the match 82 seconds after the Galaxy's first goal (1-1, 29th minute).
Victor Vazquez was wide open to head home a delivery from Julian Araujo, who beat Bill Tuiloma on the dribble and chipped a pass to the unmarked Vazquez (2-1 Galaxy, 34th minute).
Sacha Kljestan converted a penalty kick after goalkeeper Steve Clark fouled Kevin Cabral at the end of a hideous bit of defending from the Timbers (3-1 Galaxy, 53rd minute).
Samuel Grandsir — again totally unmarked — drove home a header of a Araujo cross after Josecarlos Van Rankin went to ground on a tackle attempt allowing Araujo to skip into the penalty area and pick out his open teammate.
What it means: Portland falls to 6-8-1 (19 points) and sits eighth in the Western Conference. LA is 9-6-1 (28 points), third in the West.
Takeaways: The Timbers were significantly out-competed for the last hour of the game and lost for the sixth time in eight road matches (and for the third time by a non-competitive 4-1 score). This against a Galaxy team missing at least four key players.
Yes, the Timbers are still short-handed. Yes, they need Sebastian Blanco to get up to full-match fitness (but to not rush him). Yes, the lack of depth at left back is a problem (Claudio Bravo is on his way back from the Olympics, but will he be fit to play on Wednesday?). Yes, the Timbers seemed to panic after falling behind 2-1 and got away from the possession and movement that generated early chances that Portland should have converted into at least 2-0.
But, the most disheartening part of Friday's loss was that Portland was badly out-competed for the last hour of the match.
Gio Savarese clearly expected a much better performance. Said the coach:
"Today, we had a team that played very well (for) 30 minutes, and then we disappear. We disappeared. We didn't give the game what we needed and we lost against a team that I feel that we should have gotten points here, especially with the way we started."
Up next: Portland plays its next three matches at home, with San Jose at Providence Park at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 4, and Real Salt Lake in town on Saturday, Aug. 7.
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