A grudge match between the San Jose Earthquakes and the Portland Timbers occurred with a likely result. The scoreless match was actually pretty eventful for those watching.
There were multiple chances for both teams, including a missed penalty shot by Portland midfielder Diego Valeri.
These two teams have met 13 times, and the Earthquakes have only beaten the Timbers once in all of the times that they have met. Not only that, the Quakes have lost all seven of their July matches, including four league games.
Portland aren’t doing much better, with zero wins in their last 4 road games. Although this is a tie, that streak is now over.
COMPLETE BOX SCORE AND CHALKBOARD
In the 74th minute, the crowd was beside themselves when a penalty was called on the San Jose defender Shaun Francis.
Early on, Wondolwski was looking to make moves for San Jose. A few decent looking runs gave San Jose an early edge, but none that really materialized into solid efforts. One chance gave Wondolwski almost a point blank shot that allowed the keeper to make a dexterous save, to the San Jose crowd’s dismay.
A few other chances for San Jose came when Kwarasey showed promise in a back door run that sailed just a little too high. There was a collective gasp as it narrowly missed the top of his forehead.
San Jose weren’t the only ones with missed chances, as Portland just couldn’t connect, as well. We saw Valeri force a turnover in the defending end, which resulted in a beautiful feed to Fanendo Adi. Although the pass was on point, the post was the victor once again.
After the near miss by Portland, San Jose decided that their home field advantage was going to be taken back. They quickly returned suit with a near miss header of their own by Fatai Alashe. A beautiful delivery was just a few inches too high for Alashe. His well timed header was re-introduced to the crossbar about halfway through the second half.
Portland counterattacked with a recently acquired striker named Lucas Melano. There was a shift in the control of the ball immediately after Melano entering the San Jose pitch. There was a quick burst of speed, and next thing San Jose knew, their goalkeeper had saved the day with a last ditch dive to stop a point blank chance inside the 6. Melano had snuck in behind the defense and was unable to get enough pepper on the advantageous cross that was served.
The San Jose Earthquakes avoided a little bit of a catastrophe at the hands of the Portland Timbers, but there will be a next time.
[Image Credit to mlssoccer.com]