In the second match between the two sides since Major League Soccer’s continuation of play began last month, Sounders FC (4-2-3, 15 points) fell 2-1 to the Portland Timbers (4-3-2, 14 points) on Sunday evening at CenturyLink Field. Kelvin Leerdam scored the lone goal for the Rave Green, his second of the season.
MATCH HIGHLIGHTS: https://sndrs.com/cmnrj
PHOTOS - IMAGES FOR MEDIA USE: https://sndrs.com/kxwlr
VIDEO - BRIAN SCHMETZER POST-MATCH PRESS CONFERENCE: https://sndrs.com/admcw
VIDEO - KELVIN LEERDAM & CRISTIAN ROLDAN PRESS CONFERENCE: https://sndrs.com/5zaz8
Portland struck first in the ninth minute, with Eryk Williamson and Diego Valeri combining amidst a crowd to get the former a clean shot behind the Seattle defense for the opening goal. It marked Valeri’s ninth career regular season assist against the Rave Green, the most in the Seattle-Portland series in MLS play.
Leerdam equalized in the 42nd minute with his second goal in as many games against Portland. Nico Lodeiro’s cross from the left flank was half-cleared to the top of the area, where Leerdam capitalized on the loose ball and delivered a low screamer past Steve Clark to even the game at 1-1.
Felipe Mora scored the second-half winner for the visitors, with Williamson this time providing the service in the 83rd minute. The Timbers attack caught the Seattle defense flat-footed, with Mora finding his way behind the centerbacks on a through ball from Williamson and putting a shot past Stefan Frei.
- Tonight's contest at CenturyLink Field marked the 109th all-time matchup between Seattle and Portland (all competitions). In a storied rivalry dating back to 1975 in the North American Soccer League, Seattle is now 54-41-14 all-time against its Oregon rival. Since the rivalry advanced to MLS in 2011, Sounders FC is 12-9-6 in regular-season action against the Timbers, including a 7-3-3 record inside CenturyLink Field.
- Tonight’s result marked Sounders FC’s first loss at CenturyLink Field in 2020. Before the pause in play due to COVID-19, Seattle opened the campaign with a win and a draw against Chicago and Columbus, respectively. Since returning to play following the MLS is Back Tournament in Orlando, the Rave Green went on to beat both Portland and LAFC, before falling to the Timbers in Sunday night’s clash.
- In ordinary times, Sunday's match would count toward the Cascadia Cup standings, the annual trophy that is awarded to the best-performing club of the regular season in the rivalry between Sounders FC, Portland and Vancouver Whitecaps FC. The Cascadia Cup formally started in 2004 by the biggest supporters groups for each of the three clubs: Emerald City Supporters (Seattle), Timbers Army (Portland) and the Vancouver Southsiders (Whitecaps). The competition began when all three teams were members of the USL First Division and involves all three clubs, save for 2009 and 2010, when it was between the Timbers and Whitecaps due to Seattle moving to MLS. In 2011, all three sides were in the MLS for the first time and the competition has existed in top division since then. Earlier this year, the Cascadia Cup Council decided that 2020 matches not played in front of supporters won't count towards Cascadia Cup standings.
- Kelvin Leerdam’s half-volley equalizer just before the stroke of halftime was his second goal of the year. Since joining the Rave Green in the summer transfer window of 2017, the Suriname-born Dutchman has eight regular-season goals and 10 assists to his name in 79 MLS appearances. Leerdam scored Seattle’s third goal in a 3-0 win at Portland back on August 23.
- Despite conceding two goals tonight, Seattle still has the second-best goal difference mark in Major League Soccer (+7). Only Eastern Conference-leading Columbus Crew SC has a better goal differential (+14).
- Head Coach Brian Schmetzer returned to his favored 4-2-3-1 formation on Sunday night after playing a five-man backline on the road at Real Salt Lake on Wednesday, September 3. Tonight’s starting group was the same as the unit that defeated LAFC 3-1 one week ago, with one exception. With Gustav Svensson out on international duty with Sweden, Jordy Delem stepped into a starting role in central midfield alongside João Paulo.
- Following tonight’s result, Seattle remains in second place in the Western Conference (15 points), two points behind leader Sporting Kansas City and one point ahead of Minnesota United, LA Galaxy and Portland Timbers (all on 14 points). Eight Western Conference teams are slated to make the MLS postseason in 2020.
Seattle Sounders FC 1 – Portland Timbers 2
Sunday, September 6, 2020
Venue: CenturyLink Field
Referee: Ismail Elfath
Assistants: Cameron Blanchard, Mike Rottersman
Fourth Official: Alex Chilowicz
VAR: Jon Freemon
Attendance: Closed Door
Weather: 76 degrees and clear
POR – Eryk Williamson (Diego Valeri) 9’
SEA – Kelvin Leerdam 42’
POR – Felipe Mora (Eryk Williamson) 83’
SEA – Cristian Roldan (caution) 45’ + 4’
POR – Jorge Villafana (caution) 49’
SEA – Will Bruin (caution) 76’
POR – Chris Duvall (caution) 79’
POR – Diego Chara (caution) 86’
POR – Eryk Williamson (caution) 90’
LINEUPS & STATS
Seattle Sounders FC – Stefan Frei; Kelvin Leerdam, Yeimar Gómez Andrade, Shane O’Neill (Handwalla Bwana 89’), Joevin Jones (Nouhou 81’); João Paulo, Jordy Delem (Will Bruin 62’), Cristian Roldan, Nicolás Lodeiro, Jordan Morris (Miguel Ibarra 81’); Raúl Ruidíaz
Substitutes not used: Stefan Cleveland, Xavier Arreaga, Alex Roldan, Josh Atencio, Justin Dhillon
Total shots: 15 (Ruidíaz/Leerdam, 3)
Shots on goal: 3 (Three players, 1)
Fouls: 17 (Delem, 4)
Offside: 2 (Morris/Ruidíaz, 1)
Corner-kicks: 9 (Lodeiro, 9)
Saves: 3 (Frei, 3)
Portland Timbers – Steve Clark; Chris Duvall, Larrys Mabiala (Julio Cascante HT), Dario Zuparic, Jorge Villafana; Eryk Williamson, Diego Chara, Jeremy Ebobisse, Diego Valeri (Bill Tuiloma 88’), Sebastian Blanco (Marvin Loria 5’, Yimmi Chara 70’); Jaroslaw Niezgoda (Felipe Mora 70’)
Substitutes not used: Alijaz Ivacic, Marco Farfan, Andy Polo, Cristhian Paredes
Total shots: 8 (Cascante, 2)
Shots on goal: 5 (Five players, 1)
Fouls: 19 (D. Chara, 5)
Offside: 1 (D. Chara, 1)
Corner-kicks: 5 (Valeri, 4)
Saves: 2 (Clark, 2)