John Spencer’s Portland Timbers may be in seventh place in the Major League Soccer Western Conference, but they pulled off their most defining victory of the season: a 3-0 parity-laden victory over the Los Angeles Galaxy at the New Fortress: Jeld-Wen Field in Portland, Oregon.
You talk about turning the league upside down, and this is what you mean. Goals from new acquisition Mike Chabala in the 26th minute, Jorge Perlaza in the 33rd minute and Eric Brunner in the 68th minute of play allowed Portland to deliver the same scoreline Los Angeles dealt them at the Home Depot Center.
Who needs Jack Jewsbury anyway?
The whole team wore their own armband by committee tonight against a team that picked the wrong night to play their worst soccer since May 1 against FC Dallas, who, ironically, is who they’re facing on Saturday. (A preview of that match will be posted on the View from Victoria Street and Bleacher Report).
From the observations of this columnist, the Galaxy simply did not even bother to play the same consistent brand of football from May, June and July, which saw the club pull off a 14-game unbeaten streak.
Two players did not earn their bread and butter tonight: Chris Birchall and Juan Pablo Angel.
Clearly, the suspension to Birchall took a negative impact on his play on the pitch. He was unable to mark a player in a Rose City Red shirt, and was beaten to the ball for most of the match. Birchall was a non-factor tonight, but also a non-factor was Angel.
You know, I do not understand why Angewl started tonight. Why didn’t Angel get benched? Is it because, “Oh, he’s our designated player, therefore it is our duty to start him every game provided he doesn’t injure himself?"
No, no, no. I will accept such a backside-kissing rationale as that, because Angel does not deserve to be a DP. While Landon Donovan and David Beckham were kept in check by the Portland Timbers defense, I couldn’t see Angel win a ball in the air.
I don’t think Angel would win a ball in the air if there was no one defending him. He’s too old. He’s too slow.
Bench him if you know what’s good for you, Bruce.
A solid team in any division is able to absorb the energy from the home crowd on the road and turn it against them. For the Galaxy, they have proven that they are not ready to be that solid team.
In conclusion, this is a recipe for disaster because up next in league play is a team that they were unlucky to fall to only because Mother Nature chose to be a home at the Oven that is Pizza Hut Park in Frisco, Texas.
I also consider tonight’s match as a tune-up game for CONCACAF Champions League action later this month. This is not the way you want to prepare yourselves. Combine this with the same old song and dance on Saturday, and the prospects for glory in the Champions League, as with last year, look very, very grim.
Kickoff between the Los Angeles Galaxy and FC Dallas is scheduled for Saturday, Aug. 6 at 7:30 p.m. PT/10:30 p.m. ET and will be televised by Fox Sports Prime Ticket on tape delay at 8:30 p.m. PT/11:30 p.m. ET.