Timbers look for first road win at Chivas USA
The Portland Timbers were left frustrated following the first home loss in their inaugural season. Their inability to get a road win has been just as perplexing.
The Timbers will go for their first road win in six tries Saturday night when they meet Chivas USA, which has had problems on its own pitch.
Portland (5-4-2) won its first five home games before suffering a 3-2 loss to D.C. on Sunday. The Timbers had posted three straight shutouts at home but gave up two second-half goals to United after tying the game at 1-all in the 64th minute on Jack Jewsbury's penalty kick.
"We got what we deserved today, which was zero points," coach John Spencer said. "We didn't deserve to get nothing from the game."
Spencer could be headed for even more frustration if his club can't end its road woes. Portland is 0-3-2 away from home, scoring three goals while giving up 10.
The Timbers did show some promise in their last league road game, forcing a 1-all draw against Seattle on May 14.
"We've got 17 points from the games we have played so far. We're right in the (playoff) mix," Spencer said. "Now the attitude must be, 'How do we get another 17 points?'"
Jewsbury, tied for the team lead with three goals, has recorded an assist in each of the previous four games.
Spencer's club will try to take advantage of potential fatigue by Chivas, which is coming off a 1-all draw against Vancouver on Wednesday.
Nick LaBrocca scored in the 46th minute - his second goal in as many games - but the club gave up a goal two minutes later.
Chivas (3-4-5) is winless in its last three league matchups. It also failed to protect a lead last Saturday in a 3-all tie at Columbus, going ahead 3-2 in the 57th minute before allowing the tying goal seven minutes later.
"Going up a goal and not being able to close out a lead, that's two games in a row we've let a lead slip away, especially being up a man the last 25 minutes or whatever, certainly that's disappointing," midfielder Ben Zemanski told Chivas' official website.
"It wasn't good enough for the first 45 minutes, it was passive, moving the ball sideways around the back and not going anywhere."
Chivas will play four of its next six games at home, although that's not necessarily a good thing for a club that is 1-3-2 on its own pitch. Chivas has been shut out three times at The Home Depot Center.
This is the first league match between these teams. They met in U.S. Open Cup action March 29, with the Timbers winning 2-0.