Diego Chara, Timbers @ SJ, 9.16.20
(ISI Photos)

Quotes & Notes | San Jose Earthquakes 1, Portland Timbers 1 | Sept. 16, 2020

Portland Timbers Quotes

Portland Timbers head coach Giovanni Savarese
General thoughts on the match…
“I thought that we had a good performance. The players did what I asked them to do. They looked to move the ball. It’s very difficult to play against San Jose. We found the goal and unfortunately, in one moment, [San Jose] found the space to be able to create that chance to score that goal. I still haven’t seen if it crossed the line or not. I assume that the referee saw something there. Just pleased with the performance, with the work the team put in. There were a lot of positives out of this game. We saw a lot of players coming into it. Tomás [Conechny] at the end with good energy. Yimmi [Chara] showed a lot of quality during the time that he played. We were able to play [Jaroslaw] Niezgoda with [Felipe] Mora on the field. Some fresh legs to [Andy] Polo. [Cristhian] Paredes coming in. It’s been difficult. When you play on the weekend and midweek and again now, we have to come back here on the weekend. We need to make these rotations. We need to make sure that we put fresh legs and I thought that the team did a great job today. We had a few chances. If we put those chances away, I think we come out with a little bit more from this match, but overall I thought a very good performance from the guys.”

On if unusual training conditions due to air quality concerns hampered the Timber’s performance…
“I’ve said it many times, it’s incredible the group that we have. I’m so proud of the guys. They’ve faced so many different things. This week has been very tough. Not being able to have good and clean air to be able to have normal training…Maybe we could have had the chance to be able to do a little bit better movements. Sometimes we found those movements. Sometimes we have to push to find them. It’s always difficult. When you don’t have the chance to be able to practice these things just to have everybody be very sharp, but overall, the guys had a great game. They worked very hard. They did everything that I asked them to do and we created chances. We scored a beautiful goal. I had the chance to be able to play many players some minutes today and I’m excited for what I saw. From Tomás [Conechny], from [Marvin] Loría, from [Andy] Polo, from many other players. As I said before, we were able to put together guys, [Felipe] Mora and [Jarosław] Niezgoda. [Jeremy Ebobisse] came to play also with Niezgoda, so overall I think a good performance. [Pablo] Bonilla, [Marco] Farfan they found minutes, so I’m very proud of the performance today with everything they’ve had to deal with in Portland. Hopefully soon we’re going to be able to train back again outdoors and be able to prepare even better than we did for today.”

On the conditions of the field in San Jose…
“The field wasn’t ideal. The grass wasn’t at a top level. Every time we have come here and the last two times, I’ve seen that. For some reason, different than other stadiums, other pitches, this one you see the players slide too much, especially on the other side. There’s one side that favors a little bit more, I think it gets a little more wet. Especially in the first half, when we were defending, we saw many times when we tried to dribble with the ball, we saw guys sliding. That was something that was unfortunate, but it’s not the first time that we’ve seen it. The last two times that we came here, we saw the same thing. So, it’s something that has to do with the field. Today was a little bit worse than I’d seen before.”

On the connection between the Chara brothers…
“Yes. Yimmi showed a lot of quality today. He played an excellent game. He was able to score a beautiful goal and we played him the minutes that we thought that he needed, and he continues to advance. He continues to get stronger and better. Hopefully, he’s going to be soon fully fit to be able to play 90 [minutes]. We’re working on it. But today his performance was outstanding. And then what am I going to say about Diego Chara? We know that he’s constant, he’s always one that you can rely on. He’s always bringing a top-level quality to the team and it was great to see both of them have a very good performance today.”

On having to travel back to Portland before returning to San Jose at the weekend…
“We have to leave tonight and we have to follow the protocols. We have to travel back again on the weekend the day of the game and then we’ll leave right after the match. We’re staying very strict with the protocols and it’s taxing. It’s difficult. Now we have to go back right away and in two days, we have to recover the team and be ready to play the same team traveling again to San Jose. So, it’s not easy, especially against a team that favors the physical part of the game. The running, the 1v1. That’s why I was very proud of my players today because they fought very hard and I think we could have gotten three points here.”

On rotating the lineup in the midst of a compact schedule…
“It’s very important because we have to count on everybody in order to endure all these games we’re going to have to play. Everybody has to show up and play their part in order to have good performances. I think it was very optimistic today, very positive. We saw when [Cristhian] Paredes came in, he came with a lot of good energy, played very well. Tomás [Conechny], the same. [Marvin] Loría came in, did his job. [Jeremy Ebobisse], we had [Felipe] Mora on the field. We saw [Marco] Farfan that had a difficult task to be able to go many times 1v1 against a very good player. I thought he handled [Cristian] Espinoza on the wing. Overall very proud of the group and now we have to make sure that we recoup the guys and ready to be able to play again this weekend.”

Portland Timbers midfielder Yimmi Chara
(through a translator)
On his feelings about his first career MLS goal…
“Absolutely, I’m very happy. This is something I was looking for for a long time and something that I’ve been working very hard to achieve. Obviously, I had an injury that didn’t allow me to play a few games but I continue to prepare the best way that I know and thank God I was able to score tonight.”

On how the team’s goal-scoring form has changed since the MLS Is Back Tournament…
“I think it’s a very important point that you’re making. We have created a lot of chances for goals. Unfortunately, we haven’t scored all of them, but I think you have to keep trying because you will see the goals at some point in time. We all know the kind of team that we have and we all know what we’re doing throughout the week so we have to continue working hard to achieve what we want and to continue scoring goals.”

Portland Timbers midfielder Diego Chara
On his assist to his brother, Yimmi Chara, for his first MLS goal…
“I think the team and the fans, they were waiting for this moment when Yimmi scored his first goal for Portland Timbers in the season. And for me, it was great. It’s a great feeling, I think he deserved to score and today we take one point.”

On if playing quickly and directly was the game plan coming into the match…
“I think on the field we have to make decisions, quick decisions, and with Yimmi [Chara], we tried to create a couple of moments of the game, passing the ball and tried to move quicker and the goal came from that. I saw the space, I played the ball to Yimmi and finally, he scored.”

On defending San Jose forward Chris Wondolowski…
“Everyone in the league knows Chris is a great player and he is a dangerous player in that area. When he came to the field, we have to be ready because he always is looking to get spaces behind the defenders, and I feel today we did a really good job. And I think we have to be better in the next game trying to keep more of the ball and make better decisions with the ball because in the second half I think we lose too many times the ball.”


  • Diego Chara recorded the assist on his brother’s goal, which made the Chara brothers the fifth set of brothers in MLS history to combine for a goal. They join Chris and Sean Henderson, Alex and Cristian Roldan, Bradley and Shaun Wright-Phillips and Jamar and DeMarcus Beasley.
  • Yimmi Chara recorded his first career goal with the Timbers. He is the eighth player to score a goal for Portland during the 2020 regular season. He is also the 61st player to score a goal for the Timbers in MLS regular-season play.
  • Diego Chara notched his first assist of the regular season. Chara is the 12th player to record an assist for Portland this season.
  • Diego Chara recorded his 20th career assist in the match. He is the ninth player in the club’s all-eras history to record 20 or more assists.
  • Steve Clark made his 150th career MLS appearance in the match, making a season-high five saves.
  • Bill Tuiloma blocked four shots in the match, which is tied for the second-most blocks by a Timbers player ever. Only Nat Borchers has had more blocks in a single match for Portland.
  • The Timbers are 11-5-8 against the Earthquakes in MLS play. Their 41 points against San Jose are the most points Portland has against a single opponent.