KeyBank Scouting Report | Portland Timbers vs. LA Galaxy | U.S. Open Cup | June 29, 2016

MATCH INFORMATION

Date: Tuesday, June 29, 2015
Kickoff: 7:30 p.m. (Pacific)
Location: Providence Park (Portland, Ore.)
Forecast: Clear, 80 degrees
Referee: Edvin Jurisevic
Assistant Referees: Jeremy Hanson, Mike Rottersman Fourth Official: Chipalo Street.

ABOUT THE U.S. OPEN CUP

Entering its 103rd year of competition, the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup features a tiered-bracket and single-game knockout format, with a record number of teams participating. This year’s U.S. Open Cup features 92 teams, a record in the tournament’s modern era (1995 to present). The Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup, recognized as U.S. Soccer’s national club championship, is an annual competition open to all amateur and professional soccer teams affiliated with U.S. Soccer. The tournament has crowned a champion for 102 consecutive years dating back to 1914. This year’s winner will earn $250,000, a spot in the 2017-18 CONCACAF Champions League tournament and have its name engraved on the historic Dewar Challenge Trophy, one of the oldest nationally contested trophies in American team sports. The runner-up will take home $60,000, while the team that advances the furthest from each lower division will earn a $15,000 cash prize. Sporting Kansas City is the defending U.S. Open Cup champion, having won a second tournament title (following its triumph in 2012) after a penalty shootout road victory against the Philadelphia Union on Sept. 30, 2015 at PPL Park, in Chester, Pennsylvania. In 1999, the competition was renamed to honor American soccer pioneer Lamar Hunt.

LAST MATCH RECAP

The Portland Timbers scored three second-half goals to erase a two-goal deficit and defeat the Houston Dynamo 3-2 before a sold-out crowd of 21,144 fans at Providence Park on June 26. Midfielder Diego Valeri recorded a brace and an assist, while midfielder Lucas Melano scored for a second consecutive game, as the Timbers extended their unbeaten streak to five games in league play and six games across all competitions. The come-from-behind victory marked the first time the Timbers erased a two-goal deficit to win a match in regulation across all eras in club history (since 1975). With the win, the Timbers are unbeaten in four consecutive games against the Dynamo at Providence Park, dating back to Aug. 6, 2013, producing a 3-1-1 all-time home record against Houston since 2011. Trailing 2-0 at halftime, the Timbers outshot Houston 11-5 in the second half – including a 6-1 edge in shots on target – and battled back with three goals in the final 27 minutes of the game. In the 63rd minute, the Timbers pulled a goal back when Melano ran on to a carefully placed pass from Valeri before tucking his effort into the back of the net. Less than 20 minutes later, the Timbers equalized after being awarded a penalty kick for handball inside the box in the 82nd minute of play. Eight minutes later, Valeri notched his second goal of the game from the penalty spot chipping his effort down the middle to give the Timbers a one-goal lead in the final moments of the match.

NOTABLE NUMBERS

Wednesday’s match marks Portland’s 26th Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup match since first reaching the tournament in 2004 as a second-division club. As an MLS side, the Timbers have played 11 Open Cup matches, earning a 7-4 overall record. Outside of the tournament, the Timbers contested two Open Cup play-in games in 2011 that aren’t reflected in the total numbers.

Portland has won at least one match in U.S. Open Cup play during each of the last four editions of the tournament (2013, 2014, 2015, 2016). The club made its deepest run in the annual competition in 2013, reaching the semifinals.

Wednesday’s fixture marks the second-overall meeting between Portland and LA in 2016, and the first-ever Open Cup match between the two teams as MLS clubs. Overall, Wednesday’s game signifies the 16th overall meeting between the two teams since 2011. During the Timbers era, the Galaxy have recorded just one victory at Providence Park, with Portland currently riding a four-game unbeaten run against LA at home.

Since 2013, the Timbers have recorded four victories over MLS teams in the U.S. Open Cup. During that stretch, the Philadelphia Union are the only MLS team to win more games against MLS teams.

SCOUTING THE GALAXY

After advancing to the Round of 16 with a 4-1 win against UPSL side La Maquina FC on June 14, the LA Galaxy venture into Tuesday’s game with two points in their last three league games, drawing San Jose 1-1 and the Colorado Rapids 0-0 and losing to Toronto FC 1-0. Forward Giovani dos Santos leads the team in goals (7), shots (22) and shots on target (12), while midfielder Steven Gerrard ranks first in assists (5). In matches on the road this season, the Galaxy are 1-3-4 through eight away games played so far this season, compared to an eight-game unbeaten run at the StubHub Center (4-0-4). In their last three matches on the road, the Galaxy have lost twice and drawn once, dropping three points to Toronto FC and the Montreal Impact and tying the Philadelphia Union 1-1 at Talen Energy Stadium.

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