Aljaz Ivacic listed to the bench
PORTLAND, Ore. – Portland Timbers head coach Giovanni Savarese has been named the MLS Coach of the Week, the league announced today. Savarese led the Timbers to a 3-0 road win over Cascadia rival Seattle Sounders FC on July 9. Additionally, forward Jaroslaw Niezgoda also made the Team of the Week after scoring the go-ahead goal in the match, while goalkeeper Aljaz Ivacic was listed to the bench for his shutout performance.
Savarese extended Portland’s unbeaten streak to a fifth straight match (3-0-2) with its result against the Sounders on July 9. The Timbers have earned 11 points in its last five matches dating back to June 18 (LA Galaxy, Colorado, Houston, Nashville, Seattle), including three road results in that stretch. Savarese also continued his own unbeaten streak at Lumen Field, posting a record of 5-0-1 while at the helm for Portland. All of the Timbers’ regular season road wins against Seattle in their MLS era have come under Savarese.
Niezgoda tallied his team-leading seventh goal of the season and first assist of the year in the match against the Sounders, contributing to two goals in the 3-0 victory. The Polish striker has recorded four goals and one assist in Portland’s last four matches. In 16 appearances this season, Niezgoda has taken 22 shots, landing 11 on target and netting seven for a shot conversion rate of 31.8%.
Ivacic helped lead the team to their fifth clean sheet of the season and third shutout win with the result in Seattle. The Slovenian goalkeeper made two big saves in the match, helping Portland to a second-straight shutout win at Lumen Field. In 18 appearances this season, Ivacic has registered 58 saves, ranking seventh best in MLS this season.
The Timbers return to Providence Park this weekend to host the Vancouver Whitecaps FC on Sunday, July 17; kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m. and will feature a local television broadcast on FOX 12 PLUS and radio broadcasts on 750 The Game (English) and La GranD 1150AM/93.5 FM (Spanish).