In what was the second-largest crowd in MLS history, the Seattle Sounders handily defeated the Portland Timber at Century Link Field 3-0 Sunday evening. The raucous crowd of 66,452 draped in green had plenty to cheer about as the Sounders denied the Timbers a bid for the Cascadia Cup.
With this loss, Timbers fans will know on October 21st whether or not they will hoist the Cup in the Rose City. Their match against the Vancouver White Caps will determine the winner. The Timbers (7-16-9) must win the game to win the Cup, with a Vancouver win or draw giving it back to Seattle (14-7-10).
What has already been a miserable season got worse Sunday, as they failed to score a goal for the eleventh time this season and remain winless on the road. A win or draw would have brought the Cup back to Portland.
In the 25th minute Seattle fullback Adam Johansson found space down the right sideline and sent in a cross for forward Fredy Montero. Portland defender Mamadou Danso’s clearance attempt found the back of the net, and Portland found themselves down 1-0 early after conceding the own goal—and it would get worse soon thereafter.
Moments after the own goal Seattle forward Eddie Johnson found the back of the net on a fantastic left-footed finish on an assist from Brad Evans. Fredy Montero barely missed a third goal minutes later as his strike went off of Donavan Ricketts fingertips deflecting it just enough for it to hit the post.
After a decent start, it was clear after the own goal, it was not the Timbers’ night. Fredy Montero added a third goal in the 62nd minute to clinch it for Seattle. With the win, Seattle moves to 14-7-10 with 52 points. They are second in the Western Conference.
The Timbers are in danger of finishing last in the Western Conference. They currently sit at 30 points, only one point ahead of last place Chivas USA.
For the Timbers, they now have to wait two weeks for the chance to bring the Cascadia Cup to Portland, a huge disappointment considering they could have clinched it Sunday with just a draw. They will be looking for their first road win of the season against Vancouver in an attempt to avoid becoming the fifth team in MLS history to go winless on the road.
“Seattle put on a comprehensive defeat,” said analyst Alexi Lalas.
It certainly was, and with a two week wait until Vancouver, the Timbers must start playing better football should they wish to bring home the Cascadia Cup.