Timbers Earn 1-0 Win against Real Salt Lake at Providence Park
PORTLAND, Ore. - The Portland Timbers tallied an early first-half goal and recorded their fifth clean sheet of the regular season to earn a 1-0 win against Real Salt Lake in front of 25,218 fans at Providence Park on Saturday night. Diego Valeri tallied the only goal of the match in the 16th minute, while goalkeeper Steve Clark finished with six saves to help Portland secure the win.
Against Real Salt Lake
Portland (12-11-4, 40pts) registered its fourth consecutive win over Real Salt Lake, outscoring RSL 10-2 over those four matches. With the win, the Timbers improved to 9-7-7 all-time against Real Salt Lake, including a home record of 4-2-5. Notably, Portland has recorded a shutout against Real Salt Lake in each of the last two matches at Providence Park.
Clark in goal
Clark finished the match with six saves, including a key stop in the final minute of second-half stoppage time to help Portland record its fifth clean sheet of the campaign. The shutout was the 31st of Clark's MLS career and his seventh clean sheet with the Timbers.
Portland generated an early chance in the second minute of the match. Valeri played a pass to Brian Fernandez making a run down the right side of the box. Fernandez fired a shot from a tight angle near the right post that went just wide of the target.
The Timbers took a 1-0 lead in the 16th minute. Valeri received a quick touch pass from Andrés Flores just outside the box and fired a well-placed strike inside the left post.
Searching for a second goal, Fernandez intercepted a pass just outside Real Salt Lake's box in the 29th minute, dribbled toward goal and delivered a shot that was saved by Real Salt Lake goalkeeper Nick Rimando.
In first-half stoppage time, Fernandez squeezed a pass between two Real Salt Lake players near the end line to Valeri, who attempted to play a one-touch pass inside the box, but the pass was deflected and landed for Diego Chara outside the box. Chara dribbled forward and sent a shot just over the crossbar.
In the 47th minute, Kelyn Rowe unleashed a long-range strike from the top of the box, but Clark jumped and tipped the ball over the crossbar.
Continuing to push for an additional goal, Jeremy Ebobisse laid the ball off for Sebastián Blanco at the edge of the box and he sent a low hard shot toward the bottom right corner of the goal, forcing a save from Rimando in the 56th minute.
The Timbers nearly doubled their lead in the 72nd minute. Valeri delivered a cross from the left wing inside the box to Fernandez making a late run to the right post. Fernandez directed a powerful header from close range on frame, but Rimando dove back to knock the ball away at the goal line.
Clark kept Real Salt Lake off the board in the 81st minute. Aaron Herrera dribbled down the right side of the box and sent a low driven shot toward the right corner of the goal, forcing Clark to dive to his left to make the stop near the right post.
Deep in the second-half stoppage time, Real Salt Lake was awarded a free kick at the edge of the box, while the Timbers were reduced to 10 men when Renzo Zambrano was shown a red card. Albert Rusnák fired a low hard shot through traffic curling toward the bottom right corner of the goal, but Clark dove to his left to parry the shot away and Herrera's attempt on the rebound sailed over the crossbar.
Portland has beaten Real Salt Lake in four consecutive matches between the clubs. That ties a club record for most consecutive wins against a single opponent, with Portland's four-game winning streak over the Philadelphia Union.
Steve Clark now has 31 shutouts for his MLS career.
Clark notched six saves and had his fifth shutout of the season in the match.
Diego Valeri scored his eighth goal of the season.
Valeri scored in consecutive games for the first time this season and the 10th time in his MLS career.
Next up, the Timbers will continue their 10-game homestand when the team plays host to Sporting Kansas City at Providence Park on Saturday, Sept. 7. Beginning at 7:30 p.m. (Pacific), the match features a regional television broadcast on ROOT SPORTS with local radio broadcasts on 750 The Game (English) and La GranD 1150AM/93.5 FM (Spanish).
Portland Timbers (12-11-4, 40pts) vs. Real Salt Lake (13-11-4, 43pts)
Aug. 31, 2019 - Providence Park (Portland, Ore.)
Goals by Half 1 2 F
Portland Timbers 1 0 1
Real Salt Lake 0 0 0
POR: Valeri (Flores), 16
POR: Dielna (caution), 66
POR: Zambrano (ejection), 90+5
POR: GK Clark, D Moreira, D Tuiloma, D Dielna, D Villafaña, M Flores (Zambrano, 83), M Chara, M Ebobisse, M Valeri © (Williamson, 90+2), M Blanco, F Fernandez (Loría, 85)
Substitutes Not Used: GK McIntosh, M Polo, M Conechny, F Asprilla
TOTAL SHOTS: 15 (Blanco, 5); SHOTS ON GOAL: 6 (Blanco, Fernandez, 2); FOULS: 17 (Moreira, Valeri, 4); OFFSIDES: 4; CORNER KICKS: 3; SAVES: 6
RSL: GK Rimando, D Herrera, D Glad, D Onuoha, D Toia, M Luiz, M Rowe (Johnson, 78), M Savarino, M Baird (Plata, 78), M Rusnák, F Kreilach
Substitutes Not Used: GK Putna, D Holt, M Portillo, F Saucedo, F Lennon
TOTAL SHOTS: 17 (Kreilach, Rusnák, 4); SHOTS ON GOAL: 6 (Rusnák, 3); FOULS: 10 (Three players tied, 2); OFFSIDES: 1; CORNER KICKS: 1; SAVES: 5
Referee: Nima Saghafi
Assistant Referees: CJ Morgante, Adam Garner
4th Official: Ramy Touchan
VAR: Geoff Gamble
Weather: Partly cloudy, 79 degrees
All statistics contained in this box score are unofficial
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