Timbers Register 2-1 Win against Seattle Sounders FC in Fourth Round of Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup
TACOMA, Wash. - The Portland Timbers received a goal in each half from Brian Fernandez to earn a 2-1 win against Seattle Sounders FC at Cheney Stadium in Tacoma, Wash., in the fourth round of the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup on Wednesday night, advancing to the Round of 16 for the sixth time in the last seven seasons. Fernandez tallied his second brace in all competitions since joining the Timbers, while Sebastián Blanco, Jeremy Ebobisse and Diego Valeri all recorded assists.
U.S. Open Cup history
Portland improved its record to 4-1 in its last five fourth-round matches, dating back to the 2015 season. Fernandez is the sixth player on the current Timbers roster to score a goal in the U.S. Open Cup, and is now one of three players on the current roster to have scored multiple goals in the tournament. The Timbers will face a to-be-determined opponent in the Round of 16 of this year's U.S. Open Cup next week. Round of 16 pairings and host teams will be determined Thursday morning at 7 a.m. (Pacific) during a draw conducted by U.S. Soccer.
Wednesday's match was the eighth meeting between the Timbers and Sounders FC in U.S. Open Cup play, dating back to their first match against one another in the tournament as second-division sides in 2005. It marked the fourth meeting between the two sides in the Timbers MLS era, with Portland advancing past Seattle for the second time in the last three meetings, with both Timbers victories coming on the road.
Fernandez has tallied six goals in his first four matches across all competitions for the Timbers. He has scored in four consecutive games, registering a pair of braces during that span. He is the fifth Timbers player to record a multi-goal game in a U.S. Open Cup match and the first Portland player across all eras of the club to score in each of his first four competitive matches with the team.
Portland nearly opened the scoring in the second minute of the match. After receiving the ball near the left edge of the box, Fernandez sent a quick pass to Blanco running toward the box, and Blanco fired a powerful long-distance strike just over the crossbar.
Fernandez gave the Timbers a 1-0 lead in the sixth minute of the match. Playing quickly on the counter-attack, Blanco found Fernandez in space outside the box. Fernandez received the pass, cut back toward the middle of the field and tucked his shot inside the left post from the top of the box.
Timbers goalkeeper Steve Clark came up with consecutive saves in the 24th and 25th minutes of the match, first denying Nouhou Tolo from the left wing inside the box. Moments later, Clark reacted to make a diving save on a shot from Victor Rodríguez near the edge of the six-yard box.
Seattle leveled the match in the 44th minute. Earning a free kick just outside the box, Rodríguez's bending ball deflected off a Timbers player and into the back of the net.
Deep in first-half stoppage time, Jorge Moreira dribbled down the right side of the field and played a cross into the box that curled back toward the goal, forcing a save by Seattle goalkeeper Bryan Meredith, who pushed the cross off the crossbar.
The Timbers came close to taking their second lead just two minutes into the second half. Blanco unleashed a long-range shot and Meredith parried the attempted away, but he was unable to control the ball. Fernandez pounced on the loose ball near the right post, sending a shot that skipped just wide of the left post.
Fernandez added his second goal of the game to put Portland ahead 2-1 in the 50th minute. Blanco started the break for the Timbers, playing the ball to Valeri running down the middle of the field. Valeri played the ball out wide on the left side to Ebobisse, who delivered a pinpoint cross to Fernandez in the center of the box for the finish.
Pushing for additional goals, Valeri and Fernandez combined just outside the box in the 71st minute. Fernandez passed the ball to Valeri, who passed it back to Fernandez, who sent his shot toward the bottom right corner of the goal, but Meredith dove to his left to make the save.
Seattle was awarded a penalty kick in the 78th minute after Portland was whistled for a handball in the box, but Rodríguez's attempt from the spot hit the crossbar.
In the 85th minute, Valeri picked up the ball near the edge of the box and delivered a strike through traffic heading toward the bottom right corner of the goal, but again Meredith dove to his left to make the stop and push the attempt away.
Clark came up with a key save late in the second half, diving to his left to make a one-handed save in the 88th minute on a powerful shot from close range by Henry Wingo.
Making his U.S. Open Cup debut, Brian Fernandez scored two goals. Fernandez now has six goals in his first four games as a member of the Timbers.
Fernandez is the fifth Timbers player to record a multi-goal game in a U.S. Open Cup match.
Fernandez is the first Timbers player in all eras of the club to score in each of his first four competitive matches with the team.
Sebastián Blanco, Jeremy Ebobisse and Diego Valeri each registered the first U.S. Open Cup assists of their career.
Jorge Moreira, Claude Dielna, Tomás Conechny and Fernandez made their U.S. Open Cup debuts in the match. Steve Clark made his Timbers debut in the competition.
The match was the 31st U.S. Open Cup match in Timbers team history. The club's all-time record in the competition is 17-13-1.
Wednesday's match marked the eighth time Portland and Seattle have faced off in U.S. Open Cup competition.
The Timbers will face a to-be-determined opponent in the Round of 16 of the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup next week before returning to league play. Round of 16 pairings and host teams will be determined Thursday morning at 7 a.m. (Pacific) during a draw conducted by U.S. Soccer. Portland returns to action in league play on Saturday, June 22, playing host to the Houston Dynamo at Providence Park. Beginning at 8 p.m. (Pacific), the match against Houston features a regional television broadcast on ROOT SPORTS with local radio broadcasts on 1029 and 750 The Game (English) and La GranD 1150AM/93.5 FM (Spanish).
Portland Timbers vs. Seattle Sounders FC (Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup)
June 12, 2019 - Cheney Stadium (Tacoma, Wash.)
Goals by Half 1 2 F
Portland Timbers 1 1 2
Seattle Sounders FC 1 0 1
POR: Fernandez (Blanco), 6
SEA: Rodríguez, 44
POR: Fernandez (Ebobisse, Valeri), 50
SEA: Roldan (caution), 30
SEA: Bruin (caution), 45+2
POR: GK Clark, D Moreira, D Mabiala, D Cascante, D Valentin, M Chara, M Blanco, M Zambrano (Paredes, 75), M Valeri © (Conechny, 90), M Fernandez (Dielna, 86), F Ebobisse
Substitutes Not Used: GK Attinella, D Jadama, M Asprilla, F Langsdorf
TOTAL SHOTS: 13 (Fernandez, 4); SHOTS ON GOAL: 6 (Fernandez, 3); FOULS: 15 (Chara, 4); OFFSIDES: 2; CORNER KICKS: 5; SAVES: 7
SEA: GK Meredith, D Leerdam, D Abdul-Salaam, D Campbell, D Tolo (Hopeau, 84), M Leyva, M Roldan, M Shipp, M Rodríguez (Smith, 81), M Bwana (Wingo, 58), F Bruin ©
Substitutes Not Used: GK Frei, D Smith, M Atencio, M Robles, F Diaz
TOTAL SHOTS: 24 (Rodríguez, 6); SHOTS ON GOAL: 8 (Rodríguez, 3); FOULS: 7 (Tolo, Roldan, 2); OFFSIDES: 1; CORNER KICKS: 10; SAVES: 4
Referee: Alex Chilowicz
Assistant Referees: Baboucarr Jallow, Cameron Siler
4th Official: Chipalo Street
Weather: Partly cloudy, 89 degrees
All statistics contained in this box score are unofficial
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