Score: Sounders FC 4 at Timbers 4
Site: Providence Park, Portland
Records: Sounders FC (2-2-1, 7 points); Timbers (0-2-3, 3 points).
Man of the Match: Clint Dempsey netted Sounders FC’s fifth-ever hat trick, scoring in the 24th minute, then adding another in the 85th minute and a penalty to level the match in the 87th minute. He finished the match with a game-high eight shots, including six in the match’s final 11 minutes. He was effective throughout the match but when Sounders FC needed him most, he elevated his game and the result was three goals. Dempsey now has four goals and one assist this season and five goals and one assist in his last four MLS matches, dating back to last season.
Telling Stat: 41. Entering play on Saturday, seven teams in MLS hadn’t attempted 41 shots this season. Between Seattle and Portland, there were 41 shots taken over 90 minutes. That type of offensive explosion is just the type of thing that people hope for in a nationally televised match.
What You Missed: DeAndre Yedlin had his hands full going against Darlington Nagbe and often was faced with 2v1 situations, but his late-game contributions proved incredibly valuable. First, he saved a ball off the line in the 65th minute when Norberto Paparatto got his head to a corner kick. It caromed off the bottom of the crossbar and Yedlin did everything he could to clear it and it bounced off his face and away. That kept the match at 4-2, then with the score at 4-3, he charged into the box to draw the penalty to equalize in the 87th minute. While it’s not often that a defender draws praise after giving up four goals, but Yedlin was vital.
So What: Sigi Schmid has touted his team’s character throughout the first five matches of the season and it showed again on Saturday with two comebacks. While the four goals allowed leaves a lot to work on before next week’s match against FC Dallas, the ability to come back in the face of adversity has Schmid optimistic moving forward.
That’s What He Said: “I’m excited about the character of our team that showed through today. You’re down 4-2 and you’ve got eight minutes to go and most people are saying this one’s over. And we come back and make it 4-4 and could have made it 5-4,” Schmid said about whether he was more concerned with allowing four goals or the character to come back in that scenario.