Jeremy Ebobisse #2, Timbers @ LA, 10.7.20

Portland Timbers Quotes
Portland Timbers head coach Giovanni Savarese
On tonight’s match...
“I think it was a very strong performance from the guys today. They were able to find many moments to get in behind, to find the ball at the right times, and there was a lot of good things that we did, a lot of good play, a lot of strong performances from players. I think we still could be a little bit better offensively, could have found more space, even though we scored a lot of goals. Defensively, we have to be a little bit tighter, and I felt we allowed them to find those goals a little bit too easy, the second and the third. The first one is one situation that you have to give to [Julian] Araujo, he strikes the ball well, but we need to be a little bit tighter and not allow that second and third goal to come in. But overall, a very strong performance from a group that came here with good mentality, with a desire to get three points, and I think a big statement from the guys.”


On the team’s consistency and momentum...
“The guys continue to prove that the mentality is there, that it is strong, that even though sometimes when you have a week to train, which is a very good thing because you’re able to rest, sometimes you can relax a little bit. But the guys from the beginning brought the right intensity to the match, that shows good mentality, that shows that the guys are in the right place. We had a lot of good play the first thirty minutes, we completely dominated the match. Then the last ten to fifteen [minutes in the first half], we allowed them to be able to score that goal, and we suffered a little bit. Then at the second half we came back strong, we started getting behind again, moving the ball quicker, and getting from one side of the ball to the other side, creating a lot of one vs. ones, and then we found the goals at the right moment because we look for those passes that in those last fifteen minutes in the first half, we cannot stop looking for them. Just the mentality to close the match, in this way, away from home, against a good team, it shows the guys are in a good place, and we just have to make sure we continue to work and we continue to be better defensively, because considering those two or three goals could’ve been tighter and better, but offensively we saw a lot of good things with the bell so I thought that we had a very strong performance today.”


On the team’s depth...
“They’re options because they’re doing their job and they’re able to play with the smartness that we ask them to be able to provide, and whoever comes in is able to perform. So we saw [Felipe] Mora, as you said Jebo [Jeremy Ebobisse] playing a little bit wide but coming in as a second striker, we saw Diego Valeri’s unbelievable goal, what a class to be able to score that goal, and then Jaro [Jaroslaw Niezgoda] was dangerous when he came in, with Yimmi [Chara] as well, and Eryk [Williamson] had his moments. So this is very important, and even I think the sixth goal [Jorge] Villafaña made a run to the two center backs to find himself right there to make sure that we scored that sixth goal. So for me, it’s important we continue this way, that we continue to work, the only way that we can keep improving is by continuing to work and sacrifice. Then as I said, defensively, it was a lot of good things, but we allowed three goals, and we have to be better on the second and third goals. The first is difficult, it was a good strike, but the second and third we could’ve done a little better. So overall, very proud of the performance of the guys, and today we made a big statement.”


On Jeremy Ebobisse’s free kick goal...
“Jebo has the ability to strike the ball in a very talented way, he proved that in the free kick. Between [Diego] Valeri and him, they decided to go that way. But we’ve seen that type of goal in practice from Jebo, so I’m glad that he was able to strike it in the way that he did, and it was a beautiful goal. I think the majority of the goals scored today were good goals, good play, good build up, finding the right pass to make sure that we score the goals, and I think with that mindset the guys can achieve anything, because everything is possible when working this way. But we need to continue to improve, and guys need to continue to bring those things that they brought offensively, and Jebo in the free kick did a great job.”


Portland Timbers forward Jeremy Ebobisse
On the chemistry between the Timbers attacking players…
“We’ve analyzed each game that we’ve played. Some of the games where we struggled to create a lot of chances, but still ended up getting good results, so we can reflect on ways we want to improve so we can become a more complete team. Then at times, maybe we’ve over emphasized a little bit on the attack and dug ourselves some holes defensively where we had to really get after it. We’re still looking for that balance, but ultimately we have a team of 10-15 attackers; whoever is on the field, whoever is on the bench, that know where they’re supposed to be and are capable to make plays. Tonight we made six and hopefully we can keep scoring like that because if we do, we’re going to win a lot of games.”


On tying the record for most consecutive games played for the Timbers…
“When you look at a professional environment, one that hopes to be competing for trophies like we have in the past, we’re always going to have depth. When you come out and get the opportunity to play, it’s because you beat out a lot of really good players. So the time I’m on the field, I just try to make the most of it, but I know there are guys who are ready to step up and will perform and who have performed. So ultimately it’s a team effort that’s competitive. No one’s happy to not be playing, but ultimately they know that when they’re ready, they’re going to take their chances too. So we support each other.”


On how the team feels with their current run of form and standing…
“There’s a big part of the season left to play. Ultimately, you look at the calendar and it’s about three and a half more weeks, but there’s going be a lot of games. The game was so tight that, while we put ourselves in a good position thus far, if we slip up for one or two games, ultimately we’re back in a playoff scramble. So we can’t take anything for granted. We just have to keep on going, keep improving on some of the things we let up on and we’ll go until the playoffs and push from there.”


On scoring from a free kick in the first half…
“We all know that Diego [Valeri] is our free kick taker, but he’s a really humble leader at the end of the day and if someone else feels confident in a given moment and asks respectfully, he’s going to honor that unless he really feels confident in what he’s about to do on that play. We both looked at the wall and felt that it was a little bit closer for a right footed player and he wanted to give me a chance to score, so that just speaks to his character. He could have been on the scoresheet on that play, but he chose to give it to someone who’s never taken a free kick for this team. I’m really appreciative of that and that’s the type of leadership we have on this team. Whoever it is, all the older guys are really helpful to us.”


Portland Timbers forward Felipe Mora
On his good run of goal-scoring form…
“I think the goals have come easier. We’re getting to know each other on the team and there is more rotation in the front line.”


On the chemistry between the Timbers attacking players...
"I think the training has helped a lot. The head coach [Giovanni Savarese] has helped also with the language and everything. The players… we get to know each other by our movement and I thank God because everything has played out very, very well.”


On what the Timbers need to improve…
“The games keep giving me the rhythm and the confidence that I need, but overall I think we’ve been playing really, really well. We do have sometimes other teams score on us easy goals and we do need to finish those details, but overall I think we’ve been playing very, very well.”



Notes

  • Jeremy Ebobisse recorded his second career brace. He tallied his first career brace against the New England Revolution on Sept. 25, 2019.
  • Ebobisse has scored seven goals this season for Portland.
  • Ebobisse played in his 72nd consecutive match across all competitions for the club, tying the club record for the most consecutive matches played in all competitions for the Timbers across all eras.
  • Ebobisse has scored 20 regular-season goals in his Timbers career.
  • Felipe Mora recorded his first career brace for Portland. Mora now has six goals this season for the Timbers.
  • Ebobisse and Mora are the second pair of teammates to each have a brace in the same match for Portland. Diego Valeri and Fanendo Adi each had two goals against Minnesota United FC on March 3, 2017.
  • Diego Valeri scored his seventh goal of the season. Valeri is the only player in MLS with seven or more goals each of the last five seasons.
  • With Ebobisse and Valeri leading the way with seven goals and Mora netting his sixth goal, the Timbers are the only MLS team with three players who have scored five or more goals this season.
  • Larrys Mabiala scored his first goal of the 2020 season.
  • Mabiala has eight career MLS goals for Portland, which is two more than any other Timbers defender since the club joined MLS in 2011.
  • Yimmi Chara delivered two assists in the match.
  • Eryk Williamson delivered his fourth assist of the season. Williamson has assisted in consecutive matches for the first time in his MLS career.
  • Diego Chara recorded his fourth assist of the season. It marks the first time Chara has recorded four assists in a season since 2014.
  • Jorge Villafaña tallied his third assist of the season. He has 16 career assists for the Timbers, which is tied with Jimmy Conway for 14th-most in all eras of the club.
  • The Timbers scored six goals in a match for the second time in 2020.
  • Portland’s six-goal output ties the club’s all-eras record for most goals in a single match.
  • The nine combined goals in the match are the most ever in a Timbers match in all eras of the club.

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