The last time the Seattle Sounders and Portland Timbers met, the game ended in a 4-4 draw in Oregon. This time around, the former took the honors with a 2-0 win thanks to goals from captain Clint Dempsey and the No. 10, Marco Pappa.
Dempsey waited a bit too long for the ball in the final third instead of dropping deep into the midfield to help out his teammates. However, he was in the right place at the right time when he hammered home the loose ball at the far post, where he was all alone. He has a knack for finding open space while the team is in the midst of a decent attack. This is why he was able to score the opener.
Pappa is more of a playmaker and he tried to do just that. His goal arrived on the counter, and he even made the time to cut to his left foot to hit into an empty net. His play has increased big time since returning to MLS from Europe, and he is finally becoming worthy of the No. 10 on his jersey. His job is to make plays, hold on to possession, and score goals whenever he is given the opportunity. He has become a vital part of the team’s plan going forward.
Seattle as a whole is finally clicking, especially in front of their beloved home fans. If they can keep on winning, the Western Conference will be locked up sooner rather than later, and they can even perhaps go on to win the championship.
As for Portland, the team is simply lost going forward and when they trail, only three outfielders are left to try and stop a dangerous counter. Rushing an attack is always a bad idea when the opponent is organized. Patience, quick passing, long accurate balls into space, and slight pressure can get the job done.
Until this team learns this, the playoffs will not exist for them.