Sunday, July 24, 2016

It Happened in America: Colorado, Dallas, draw to stay atop standings

Portland Timbers 1-2 LA Galaxy
The Timbers season is beginning to heat up, again. Their nine match unbeaten run would be tested against LA Galaxy at home. The Galaxy were on the front foot nice and early with a surgical passing move to cut through the short handed Timbers defense. Gio Dos Santos provided the final ball for Robbie Keane's easy seventh minute tap in. A quick move down the left flank provided Zardes with a similar tap in in the 11th. With the early two goal lead in the bank, LA was more or less content defending thought the rest of the first half. They had another good chance on the counter, but the Portland defense was able to scramble and prevent Zardes from another easy goal. The Timbers managed to pressure enough to find a goal before the break. Zarek Valentin, of all people, cut across the center of the box to hammer home the opening goal for the home team.

The second half was more tame. Portland had lost Nat Borchers to an unfortunate looking leg injury just before half time, but LA wasn't particularly interested inn penetrating the ever weaker defense. Instead, the Timbers threw resources at the Galaxy like there was no tomorrow. Their best chance came in the final minute oven a free kick that glanced off Fanendo Adi's head and wide. No equalizer came and Portland suffered their first loss in ten matches.

Columbus Crew 2-2 Orlando City
Jason Kreis isn't yet in charge, but Orlando City's new boss. Toby Tchani hammered home the opener for Columbus 20 minutes in. Just before half time, Kevin Molino conceded a penalty and allowed Ola Kamara to double the Crew lead. Orlando clawed back into the game after that. Within six minutes they had the site equalized. First it was Kaka in yore 65th and then Cyle Larin in the 70th tied it to earn his side a share of the points.

Montreal Impact 5-1 Philadelphia Union
Another weekend, another test for the East contending Philadelphia Union. Instead of the Union pressuring the conference lead,  it was Montreal's foreign star running the show. Didier Drogba scored for the Impact in the 19th minute. His double arrived in the 42nd. H e grabbed that hat trick in the 52nd. The Union cobalt decided to show up after Drogba has rub a train on them. Chris Pontius provides a consolation goal inn the 72nd. That was only dashed hope, though. Ignacio Piatti added a fourth in the 87th and Matteo Mancosu scored in stoppage time to round out the romp.

New England Revolution 1-0 Chicago Fire
New England needs a win in this very winnable match in order to keep their playoff position stable. A lifeless goal free draw was livened by Je-Vaughan Watson in the 85th minute. It was sort of an accidental goal. Sean Johnson failed to punch a corner and it fell right onto Watson's head and into the ned. That remained the only goal of the match and the Revs would hold onto the sixth spot in the East.

Toronto FC 4-1 D.C. United
Toronto would need to survive yet another match without Michael Bradley in the midfield. It wasn't affecting then early on when Sebastian Giovinco curled a free kick on at the 21 minute mark. D.C. United. The goal fest continued through Marky Delgado five minutes later. Giovinco banged another free kick in the 39th. After a bit of a lull, another Giovinco goal finished the 4-1 scoreline in second half stoppage time.

Colorado Rapids 1-1 FC Dallas
Easily the best match of the weekend heading in, Colorado's stout defense would face off with Dallas and their high profile attack. Colorado was able to get the jump on Dallas just before the break. Marlon Hairston got the Rapids in front in the 44th minute. Despite Colorado still controlling much possession, Dallas was able to get plenty mores shots away. It looked like the Rapids defense would hold on for the duration, at least until Victor Ulloa's rocket from outside the box tied the score in the 82nd minute. In the end, the two best sides in MLS failed to separate themselves and Dallas holds their three point Supporters Shield lead.

Houston Dynamo 0-0 Vancouver Whitecaps
Vancouver is on the edge of the Western Conference playoffs, and a road trip to muggy Houston would be a tricky place to find a win to bolster their chances. They Dynamo were getting more of the chances throughout the match, but were unable to score as this match stayed scoreless throughout. That gives the Caps a two point buffer on a playoff spot, at least until Sporting Kansas City plays on Sunday afternoon.

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