TUCSON, Ariz. – Playing their fourth match of the 2019 preseason campaign, presented by Old Trapper Beef Jerky, the Portland Timbers continued play in the Mobile Mini Sun Cup, playing to a 2-2 draw against the New York Red Bulls at the Kino Sports Complex in Tucson, Ariz., on Saturday night. Forward Jeremy Ebobisse and midfielder Diego Valeri each scored for a second straight match as the Timbers drew for the first time this preseason.
- WATCH: Match Replay
Portland has scored 11 goals in four preseason matches thus far, receiving goals from seven different players. Additionally, midfielder Sebastián Blanco registered his first assist of the preseason in Saturday’s match. In four preseason games this season, the Timbers are 3-0-1, including a 1-0-1 record in the Mobile Mini Sun Cup.
Early on, the Red Bulls took a 1-0 lead in the 13th minute after forward Brian White poked in midfielder Marcus Epps’ low cross from the right wing.
The Timbers had their first chance on goal in the 16th minute after Valeri’s service from a corner kick picked out defender Larrys Mabiala, but his bouncing header was saved by goalkeeper Evan Lauro. Four minutes later, Ebobisse played a long ball down the right flank to midfielder Dairon Asprilla, who picked out Valeri at the top of the box. Playing a one-time pass, Valeri found Blanco on the left edge of the 18-yard box, but his shot missed over the crossbar in the 20th minute.
The Red Bulls took a 2-0 lead in the 32nd minute after defender Sean Nealis headed in Epps’ delivery from a corner kick.
In the 35th minute, Valeri’s in-swinging corner-kick service found the onrushing Mabiala, but his glancing header flashed past the target.
Two minutes into the start of the second half, Valeri dispossessed the ball from a Red Bulls player, but his chipped attempt from outside the box was saved by Lauro in the 47th minute.
The Timbers made it a 2-1 score line in the 62nd minute after Blanco dribbled past his marker down the left edge of the penalty area and crossed to Ebobisse just inside the six-yard box, placing his header past Lauro.
After Blanco was fouled inside the penalty area, Valeri stepped up to the penalty spot and sent Lauro diving the wrong way to level the match at 2-2 in the 70th minute.
Continuing to apply pressure, forward Lucas Melano’s low shot from a tight angle from inside the 18-yard box forced Lauro into a diving save in the 75th minute. Four minutes later, midfielder Andy Polo dribbled down the right edge of the penalty area, floating a cross to the center of the box to midfielder Andrés Flores, but his header was redirected over the crossbar.
In their third game of the Mobile Mini Sun Cup, the Timbers take on against the Phoenix Rising FC on Wednesday, Feb. 20; kickoff is set for 5 p.m. (Pacific).
Portland Timbers vs. New York Red Bulls (MLS Preseason)
Feb. 16, 2019 – Kino Sports Complex (Tucson, Ariz.)
Goals by Half 1 2 F
Portland Timbers 0 2 2
New York Red Bulls 2 0 2
NY: White (Epps), 13
NY: Nealis (Epps), 35
POR: Ebobisse (Blanco), 62
POR: Valeri (Penalty), 70
NY: Duncan (caution), 26
POR: Blanco (caution), 26
POR: Guzman (caution), 55
POR: Melano (caution), 90
POR: GK Attinella (Clark, 73), D Valentin (Farfan, 73), D Mabiala (Tuiloma, 73), D Cascante (Dielna, 73), D Villafaña (Miller*, 73), M Guzmán (Paredes, 73), M Chara (Flores, 63), M Asprilla (Polo, 46), M Valeri (Loría, 73), M Blanco (Conechny, 71), F Ebobisse (Melano, 71)
* Indicates Timbers guest player/trialist
NY: GK Louro, D Buckmaster^ (Loebe, 79), D Scarlett+, D Nealis, D Duncan, M Bezecourt (Koffi, 65), M Fernandez, M Valot (Mines, 46), M Ivan (Stroud+, 69), M Epps (Barlow+, 69), F White
+ Player currently signed to USL roster, ^ Guest player