Matchup: Timbers vs Chivas Insight
With so much focus on the Portland Timbers sloppy defense after their 5-3 loss Saturday to the LA Galaxy, everyone seems to be forgetting the side scored three goals.
The last time Portland had such an offensive eruption was in their season-opening 3-1 win over the Philadelphia Union on March 12.
So listen up Timbers fans, things could be getting better for our club since interim head coach Gavin Wilkinson’s took over the helm following the dismissal of John Spencer.
Matchup: Portland Timbers vs Chivas USA
Date: Wednesday July 18, 2012
Time: Kick-off: 1:00 PM EST
Venue: Home Depot Center at Carson, Ca.
If you watched the match, the Timbers at times kept the ball well, moved the ball well, and certainly had individuals that had amazing games.
But key defensive lapses cost Portland in the end.
However, the lone performance from Timbers’ Scottish striker Kris Boyd, is another positive that can be garnered from this match. It was his first brace in a Timbers’ uniform, and brought his total to a team-leading seven on the season.
Not to mention the club’s three goals came at home, a place that Portland should have won, as they are 5-3-2 at JELD-WEN.
Nevertheless, what’s scarier is the team is winless on the road, with six losses and two draws.
The will now get their best chance at their first win on the road this year, when they face a Chivas side that is winless in its last five, and has just two wins at Home Depot Center in 2012.
Portland will need to assemble quickly, though, under Wilkinson’s regime, especially defensively.
Too extenuate the already difficult task; Portland has hired another assistant coach to spread out coaching duties as Wilkinson juggles both the interim head coaching and general manager positions. This may just add to the team’s disorder.
That leaves only one game plan for a Portland side that sits in the basement of the MLS Western Conference.
Boyd needs to operate independently, stretching the Chives’ defense, while they themselves keep a much tighter back line than they did against the Galaxy, who could have easilynetted a couple of more goals.
If the Timbers attack early and often, getting on the board first, they could stun Chivas, and then it would allow then to settle into a staunch defensive posture. Without the need to push foward.
The loss against LA was just the Timbers’ third loss as a MLS side when they scored the game’s first goal. So this is critical.
I expect Portland to build on the offensive momentum they have recently discovered behind Boyd, as well as learning from its defensive lapses, eking out its first road victory of 2012, 1-0 over the Goats.