MATCH RECAP | Seattle Sounders 2, Portland Timbers 0
SEATTLE, Wash. — In a Cascadia Cup derby match, the Portland Timbers lost 2-0 to the Seattle Sounders in front of 64,207 fans at CenturyLink Field in Seattle. In his first game with the Seattle since arriving back from the 2014 World Cup, Clint Dempsey scored a goal in the 74th minute, which proved to be the game-winner, while Marco Pappa added an insurance strike in the 87th minute.
The heated nature of the rivalry was apparent from the outset as things got testy twice in the opening half, with two separate shoving matches breaking out between the two sides. However, neither team was able to notch a goal before the break, leaving the contest at 0-0 after the first 45 minutes.
Each team seemed to come out with a sense of purpose following halftime, accumulating several good-looking opportunities. The first for Seattle came just after the second-half kickoff when midfielder Gonzalo Pineda had a chance to blast a header into the Portland net off a cross from Jalil Anibaba. But Portland goalkeeper Donovan Ricketts, who set a new Timbers single-game record with eight saves, made a diving save to deny Pineda and the Sounders of the lead.
Just moments later Portland’s Steve Zakuani cut into the center of the pitch and got the ball on his right foot before ringing a 22-yard shot directly at Seattle’s Stefan Frei.
The even nature of the game changed when Seattle forward Obafemi Martins made his return following an injury layoff, coming on for Chad Barrett in the 51st minute. Martins made an early impact, almost knocking in a goal soon after entering the game off a cross from DeAndre Yedlin, but his real value came in connecting attacking passes and opening lanes for the rest of the Seattle attack.
The Sounders finally broke through in the 74th minute, following a wild sequence off a restart. Dempsey’s initial attempt was spectacularly blocked by Ricketts and bounced to Martins, who was denied again by a sprawling Ricketts. But the subsequent deflection landed directly in front of Dempsey and the Seattle captain didn’t miss, blasting a short-range attempt into the top right corner to give Seattle the 1-0 lead.
After coming on in the second half, Timbers forward Gastón Fernández almost found the equalizer with a wicked curling shot from distance that pinged off the right post. Just moments later though, Seattle's Pappa notched in the dagger in the 87th minute putting the Sounders up 2-0 and effectively sealing the Timbers’ fate.
The conference-leading Sounders improve to 12-4-3, while the Timbers fall to 4-6-9. Portland retutn home to play the Colorado Rapids Friday at Providence Park (8pm PT, NBCSN).
Portland Timbers (4-6-9, 21pts) at Seattle Sounders FC (12-4-2, 38pts)
July 13, 2014 – CenturyLink Field (Seattle, Wash.)
Goals by Half 1 2 F
Portland Timbers 0 0 0
Seattle Sounders FC 0 2 2
SEA: Dempsey (Pineda), 71
SEA: Pappa (Neagle), 86
SEA: Alonso (Caution), 31
POR: Jewsbury (Caution), 68
POR: Valeri (Caution), 71
POR: Wallace (Caution), 90+2
Lineups & Stats
POR: GK Ricketts, D Harrington (Alhassan, 83), D O’Rourke, D McKenzie, D Villafaña, M Johnson ©, M Nagbe, M Jewsbury, F Zakuani (Wallace, 63), F Adi, F Valeri (Fernández, 74)
Substitutes Not Used: GK Weber, D Ridgewell, D Paparatto, M Nanchoff
TOTAL SHOTS: 9 (Zakuani, 4); SHOTS ON GOAL: 3 (Three players tied, 1); FOULS: 17 (Harrington, 4); OFFSIDES: 2; CORNER KICKS: 3; SAVES: 8
SEA: GK Frei, D Yedlin, D Marshall, D Anibaba, D Scott, M Neagle, M Alonso, M Pineda, M Pappa (Azira, 87), F Dempsey © (Remick, 90+1), F Barrett (Martins, 51)
Substitutes Not Used: GK Ford, M Kovar, F Cooper, F Weaver
TOTAL SHOTS: 23 (Three players tied, 5); SHOTS ON GOAL: 10 (Dempsey, Neagle, 3); FOULS: 14 (Neagle, 4); OFFSIDES: 4; CORNER KICKS: 6; SAVES: 3
Referee: Alan Kelly
Assistant Referees: George Gansner, Jeff Hosking
4th Official: Alejandro Mariscal
Time of Game: 1:52
Weather: Cloudy, 84 degrees
All statistics contained in this box score are unofficial