Real Salt Lake 3, Timbers 2
Kyle Beckerman’s goal in stoppage time capped a furious
come-from-behind rally for Real Salt Lake in a 3-2 victory over the
Portland Timbers on Saturday night.
Jonny Steele, a late substitute, got the ball past diving
Portland goalkeeper Troy Perkins in the 89th minute after RSL
(3-1-0) fell behind 2-1 in the second half. Beckerman’s goal then
stunned the sellout crowd at Jeld-Wen Field.
”I felt like we were going to score but I don’t want to say too
much as I would have been happy with a tie,” RSL coach Jason Kreis
said. ”However, I felt that the third goal was a little bit of a
gift and I walked away with a smile on my face.”
Darlington Nagbe scored two goals for the Timbers (1-2-1),
becoming the first Portland player with multiple goals in a game
since Jorge Perlaza had a pair in the Timbers’ home opener last
year, their inaugural MLS season.
”It’s crazy how momentum changes,” Nagbe said with a
Alvaro Saborio, returning to the starting lineup for the first
time this season, scored on a penalty kick in the first half for
RSL, which was opening a stretch of three matches in eight
The Timbers controlled the ball early on and Perlaza came close
to scoring in the 32nd minute, but the ball caught the side
netting. Real Salt Lake went up 1-0 in the 39th on Saborio’s
penalty kick after Portland defender Rodney Wallace was called for
a hand ball in the box.
The Timbers tied it in the 48th minute when Nagbe’s kick from
out in front of the box sailed between two RSL defenders and past
goalkeeper Nick Rimando.
After his second goal in the 65th flew over Rimando’s
outstretched arms, Nagbe pumped his arm before running toward coach
John Spencer for a team celebration at the sideline.
But after the game, it was all disappointment for the
”I think we had a good game plan, but we got caught sleeping a
couple of times,” Timbers midfielder Eric Alexander said.
Kreis called Portland ”dynamic,” even in the loss.
”Eric Alexander was everywhere tonight causing a lot of
problems for us. He was coming inside and making things look
different. Nagbe as well caused us trouble by getting inside and
behind Beckerman to cause plays in the first and second half,”
Kreis said. ”If I was John (Spencer) I’d be really pleased with my
group because I thought they played really well.”
RSL was at its healthiest since the start of the season.
Defender Nat Borchers made his debut with the team after sitting
out with a left quadriceps strain. Saborio and midfielder Javier
Morales were also back in RSL’s starting lineup after offseason
surgery, and midfielder Will Johnson made his season debut after
recovering from a strained groin.
The Timbers, meanwhile, were missing a few players, including
midfielder Kalif Alhassan, out with a groin strain, and forward
Eddie Johnson and defender Hanyer Mosquera, who both have
Spencer seemed just as stunned as the crowd after the match.
”It’s a cruel game sometimes, and tonight is one of those
games,” he said.
Last season the Timbers downed RSL 1-0 in Portland before
playing to a 1-all draw in Utah in October.
Both teams were coming off losses: Portland fell 1-0 at New
England last weekend and RSL lost 1-0 at home to Chivas USA.
The Timbers Army supporters group urged fans to wear hoodies to
the game in support of the international ”Show Racism the Red
Some criticized the move, claiming that it appeared to be a
statement in the Trayvon Martin case. The Florida teenager’s death
has sparked a debate about whether hooded sweat shirts present a
Martin, 17, was shot and killed in Sanford, Fla., last month by
a neighborhood watch volunteer who has claimed self-defense and has
not been arrested. Martin was wearing a hoodie when he was
A sellout crowd of 20,438 fans attended the match.