On paper, it said that Wednesday nights game between Cascadia Rivals Seattle Sounders FC and the Portland Timbers was a preseason friendly at Kino Stadium in Tuscon. Truth be told there is no such thing as a friendly match between said soccer sibling rivals.
To add more flavor to Wednesday’s night match was that the last time the two rivals was November 8th, 2018 at CenturyLink when the Portland Timbers knocked out the Sounders in Leg 2 of the Western Conference Semifinal playoffs to advance to the Western Conference Finals. Fast forward to Wednesday nights friendly and no imagination needed as to what type of game it would be.
The game lived up to its billing with hard-fought challenges and as soon as the whistle blew to start the game. Seattle Sounders head coach Brian Schmetzer shuffled his line up which was a mixture of First Team and Tacoma Defiance players. Timbers head Coach Giovanni Savarese on the other hand, rolled out a strong first team line up that would be the difference in the Timbers 2-1 victory.
The Timbers had a chance to take the lead in the sixth minute but Diego Valeri’s shot went over the crossbar and the game remained goalless until the 33rd minute when Seattle took a 1-0 lead on a header by Handwalla Bwana. Portland was awarded a penalty kick in the 39th minute and Valeri made up for his earlier transgressions with a successful kick that leveled the game at 1-1.
The Timbers were awarded a penalty in the 54th minute for an alleged handball by Sounder defender Jordy Delem but the call was eventually overturned after a VAR review. The Timbers game-winner arrived in the 88th minute on a Jeremy Ebobisse header courtesy of an exquisite pass from Dairon Asprilla.
Sounders FC’s 2018 preseason camp in Arizona concludes with a final exhibition match versus FC Dallas on Saturday, February 16 before the club returns to Seattle.
As part of its 2019 preseason preparations, Sounders FC is set to host Uruguayan club Nacional in a friendly at CenturyLink Field on Wednesday, February 20 at 7:30 p.m. PT. One of the most storied clubs in South America, Nacional has won the Uruguayan Primera División 46 times, in addition to three Copa Libertadores titles and three Intercontinental Cups.
MATCH SUMMARYSeattle Sounders FC 1 – Portland Timbers 2Wednesday, February 13, 2019
Venue: Kino Sports Complex I Tucson, Arizona
Weather: 63 degrees and clear
SEA – Handwalla Bwana (Marlon Vargas+) 33′
POR – Diego Valeri (penalty kick) 40
‘SEA – Jeremy Ebobisse (Dairon Asprilla) 88′
SEA – Alex Roldan (caution) 36
‘SEA – Marlon Vargas+ (caution) 50
‘POR – Andrés Flores (caution) 90′
LINEUPS & STATS
Seattle Sounders FC- Bryan Meredith (Trey Muse 74′); Henry Wingo (Kyle VanAlstine* 74′), Jordy Delem (Josh Atencio+ 74′),Jonathan Campbell (Aleks Berkolds* 74′), Jordan McCrary (Nouhou 74′); Danny Leyva+, Alex Roldan (Joel Rydstrand* 74′), Marlon Vargas+ (Azriel Gonzalez+ 58′), Harry Shipp (Danny Robles+ 74′), Handwalla Bwana (Ray Serrano+ 74′), Will Bruin (Alec Diaz+ 74′) + Player currently signed to USL roster* Sounders FC Academy player^ Guest player
Portland Timbers – Jeff Attinella (Steve Clark 60′); Derek Valentin (Marco Farfan 60′), Larrys Mabiala (Bill Tuiloma 60′), Julio Cascante (Claude Dielna 60′), Jorge Villafaña (Miller* 60′); David Guzmán (Andres Flores 60′), Cristhian Paredes (Diego Chara 60′), Andy Polo (Dairon Asprilla 60′), Diego Valeri (Marvin Loria 60′), Sebastian Blanco (Tomas Conechny 60′); Lucas Melano (Jeremy Ebobisse 60′)