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MLS Aug 12, 2020

Portland Timbers capture MLS is Back Tournament title

ORLANDO, Fla. – The Portland Timbers claimed the MLS is Back Tournament title with a 2-1 win against Orlando City SC at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex on Tuesday night.

Larrys Mabiala opened the scoring in the first half, tallying his first goal of the tournament, while Dario Zuparic notched the game-winner, his first career goal with the Timbers, in the 66th minute to secure the tournament championship.

Tournament Finals
With the tournament win, Portland has won two championship finals (2015, 2020) in the last six seasons. The game marked the Timbers third appearance (2015, 2018, 2020) in a tournament final in MLS play. Notably, the match was head coach Giovanni Savarese’s sixth final in eight years as a professional manager and his second final (2018, 2020) in three seasons with Portland. Individually, Diego Chara, Diego Valeri and Jorge Villafaña have started in all three MLS tournament finals (2015, 2018, 2020) with Portland. All three were part of the club’s 2015 MLS Cup Championship team.

MLS Is Back Review
In total, 20 players featured for the Timbers during the tournament with Sebastián Blanco, Chara and Steve Clark playing every minute in the competition. Portland scored multiple goals in six of its seven matches at the tournament. Four players (Blanco, Jeremy Ebobisse, Jaroslaw Niezgoda, Diego Valeri) recorded two or more goals in the competition. Ebobisse led the team with four goals in tournament. Blanco registered a team-best five assists and also added three goals. Notably, nine players tallied an assist in the tournament for Portland with Blanco, Valeri (four assists), Eryk Williamson (two assists) finishing with multiple assists.

Center Back Goals
Mabiala scored his first goal of the tournament and Zuparic tallied his first career goal with the Timbers in the match. Mabiala’s goal was the eighth of this Timbers career. Notably, it marked the second time that Portland has had multiple center backs score in the same match in an MLS competition. The only previous time was in the first leg of the 2015 Western Conference Finals when Nat Borchers and Liam Ridgewell scored.

Goal-Scoring Plays
POR – Larrys Mabiala (Diego Valeri), 27th minute: Valeri served a free kick into the box from the far left wing toward Mabiala, who made a streaking run into the box and directed a diving header inside the right post.

ORL – Mauricio Pereyra, 39th minute: Nani delivered a cross to the top of the six-yard box that took multiple deflections before Mauricio Pereyra pounced and converted from close range.

POR – Dario Zuparic (Jeremy Ebobisse), 66th minute: Off a corner kick, Williamson fired a shot from inside the box that that was re-directed by Ebobisse to Zuparic for the finish near the goal line.

Notes

  • The Timbers won their second championship final (2015, 2020) in the last six seasons, marking their fourth appearance in a final across all eras and their third appearance (2015, 2018, 2020) in a final during the MLS era.
  • With the win, Portland earned a berth in the 2021 Concacaf Champions League. It is the third time the club has qualified for the competition, appearing in the tournament in 2014 and 2016.
  • Diego Chara, Diego Valeri and Jorge Villafaña have started in all three MLS tournament finals (2015, 2018, 2020) with Portland. All three were part of Portland’s 2015 MLS Cup Championship team.
  • Larrys Mabiala and Dario Zuparic scored their first goals of the tournament in the match.
  • Zuparic’s goal was the first of his Timbers career.
  • With goals from Mabiala and Zuparic in the match, a total of seven players tallied a goal for Portland in the competition.
  • The match marked the second time that Portland has had multiple center backs score in the same match in an MLS competition. The only previous time was in the first leg of the 2015 Western Conference Finals when Nat Borchers and Liam Ridgewell scored.
  • Mabiala scored his eighth career goal for the Timbers in all competitions in the match. Six of Mabiala’s eight goals have been header goals.
  • Jeremy Ebobisse recorded his first assist of the tournament.
  • Ebobisse became the ninth player to register an assist for the Timbers in the competition.
  • Diego Valeri recorded his fourth assist of the tournament and his third in the last two matches.
  • Valeri has registered 25 assists on set pieces in his MLS career, which is four more than any other player since he joined the league in 2013.
  • Eryk Williamson tallied his second assist of the tournament. Williamson joins Blanco (5) and Valeri (4) as one of three players with multiple assists for the Timbers in the tournament.
  • Portland scored multiple goals in six of their seven games in the competition.

Next Game
The Timbers will resume MLS regular-season play on Sunday, Aug. 23, playing host to Seattle Sounders FC at Providence Park. The Aug. 23 match will feature a national television broadcast on FS1 with local radio broadcasts on 750 The Game (English) and La GranD 1150AM/93.5 FM (Spanish).

Portland Timbers vs. Orlando City SC – MLS is Back Tournament – Final
Aug. 11, 2020 – ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex (Orlando, Fla.)

Goals by Half                1          2          F
Portland Timbers           1          1          2
Orlando City SC            1          0          1

Scoring Summary:
POR: Mabiala (Valeri), 27
ORL: Pereyra, 39
POR: Zuparic (Ebobisse, Williamson), 66

Misconduct Summary:
POR: Mabiala (caution), 44
ORL: Antoñio Carlos (caution), 47
ORL: Moutinho (caution), 63
POR: D. Chara (caution), 70
ORL: Nani (caution), 73
POR: Villafaña (caution), 73
ORL: Ruan (caution), 85

Lineups:
POR: GK Clark, D Duvall, D Mabiala, D Zuparic, D Villafaña, M D. Chara, M Williamson, M Loría (Polo,, 67), M Valeri (c) (Tuiloma, 90), M Blanco (Mora, 89), F Ebobisse (Niezgoda, 67)

Substitutes Not Used: GK Attinella, GK Ivacic, D Bonilla, D Cascante, D Farfan, M Conechny, M Paredes, M Zambrano

TOTAL SHOTS: 13 (Valeri, 4); SHOTS ON GOAL: 6 (Valeri, 3); FOULS: 15 (D. Chara, 5); OFFSIDES: 1; CORNER KICKS: 5; SAVES: 0

ORL: GK Gallese, D Ruan (Smith, 87), D Antoñio Carlos, D Jansson, D Moutinho, M Pereyra, M Rosell (Patiño, 79), M Méndez (Urso, 71), M Mueller (Michel, 71), F Nani (c), F Akindele (Dike, 78)

Substitutes Not Used: GK Rowe, D De John, D Schlegel, D Miller, M Perea, M DeZart, M Robinho

TOTAL SHOTS: 14 (Méndez, 3); SHOTS ON GOAL: 1 (Pereyra, 1); FOULS: 17 (Ruan, 4); OFFSIDES: 1; CORNER KICKS: 3; SAVES: 4

Referee: Ismail Elfath
Assistant Referees: Kathryn Nesbit, Kyle Atkins
4th Official: Joe Dickerson
VAR: Allen Chapman
Weather: Partly cloudy, 77 degrees