AUSTIN, Texas – Portland Timbers eMLS competitor Edgar “RCTID Thiago” took part in the 2022 eMLS Cup Last Chance Qualifier Saturday advancing all the way to the quarterfinals before losing 6-3 to Houston Dynamo’s George “Adamou__99” Adamou.
Following eMLS League Series 1 and 2 earlier this winter that saw Portland in 19th place in the 27-team field, Thiago was part of a 16-player field of four groups. Placed in Group A with New York City FC’s NYC Gustavo, New England Revolution’s YounggCarter and Vancouver Whitecaps FC's exraa, Guerrero and each of the teams faced each other twice for six games total. Thiago took second, going 3-2-1 for 10 points. His play was highlighted by an opening match, come-from-behind 4-3 win over NE’s YoungCarter and then he beat the Revolution again 4-1 on the strength of a Neymar hat trick. Thiago clinched his spot in the knockouts in his fifth match with a clutch 1-0 victory over Vancouver’s exraa.
Guerrero was glad to move out of what was a tough group and used the number of games to scout and adjust to each opponent.
"Since we played each person twice, the first game was like a feeler game, where I still needed to get points, but it was a really good way to learn how the opponent plays and to pick up points on the second leg of those matches,” he said. “Each opponent was a little bit different, so I had to adjust to a different set of defending and attacking.”
Advancing to the quarterfinals, Guerrero faced Houston’s Adamou__99, who had won Group D with a 4-2-0 record. Thiago went down 1-0 early but fought back with Kylian Mbappe equalizing with a nice spin move to make it 1-1. The Dynamo went up 3-1 before Portland’s Neymar then scored a golazo to make it 3-2 just before the half. With Thiago pushing to equalize, Adamou started to pull away in the second half. Despite a late 86th minute red card against Houston, the final score ended 6-3 for the Dynamo.
Adamou played all the way to the final, before losing 2-1 to LAFC’s Savvy Panda who, as the Last Chance Qualifier Champion, now claims the 12th and final spot in tomorrow’s eMLS Cup presented by Coca-Cola.
Despite his 2022 eMLS season coming to an end, Guerrero was pleased with the day’s play and happy to have been able to participate in an in-person tournament after more than two years' absence for everyone due to the pandemic.
"Seeing everybody in person was it was a little bit surreal just because it's been [so long],” he said. “Being in person is a lot better. There's a better atmosphere in the games, with people around everybody.”
The 2022 eMLS Cup is set for 12pm PT this Sunday, March 13, at the historic Austin City Limits Live in Austin, Texas as an official event of SXSW.
WATCH: Fans can tune into the 2022 eMLS Cup on the official MLS Twitch and Twitter channels. This year’s edition will feature squad streaming for the opening rounds, allowing viewers to view up to four matches at once.
Additionally, Portland Timbers EA SPORTS FIFA content creator and gamer Leah Revelle will be streaming on site at ACL Live in Austin hosting a watch party along side other FIFA personalities including Chicago Fire's CHI_Kacee and more. Be sure to tune in on her Twitch channel Sunday.
REGISTER: Are you in Austin? The event at SXSW is free and open to fans of all ages. Sign up at www.universe.com/eMLSCup
LIVE VIEWERSHIP REWARDS: Can't make it to Texas? Watch eMLS Cup on Twitch.tv and you could earn a set of great FIFA Ultimate Team rewards.
Link your EA and Twitch accounts, watch the stream for at least 90 minutes and you will receive the eMLS Crest, an FGS Player Token, and the eMLS Tifo in your FUT Account. Once you have collected one token, you will be able to redeem it for FUT rewards in-game.