A game that started off promising, ends in disaster for the Union. After scoring the first goal of the game, the team gave up three unanswered goals to the Timbers to lose at home. This game showed off many of the Union’s weaknesses.
First thirty minutes of the game, started off well for the men in blue. They dominated possession and put pressure on Portland’s backline. The hard work paid off in the 26th minute, when Medunjanin‘s corner kick found the head of Marquez who headed it home to give the Union the lead.
However, a few minutes later, Portland’s Nagbe got a shot off that went under Marquez’s leg and got past Blake to tie the game up. After this goal, the confidence in the Union disappeared and Portland for the rest of the game started to dominant in both possession and shots on goal. In the 67th minute, the Timbers double their lead with a goal off of a free kick, that found the head of defender Roy Miller. To finish off the night, the Union put themselves in a bad situation, when Fabinho missed the ball after trying to clear it, allowing Darren Mattocks to break away and go one on one with Blake. With limited option, Blake tipped up Mattocks and gave a pk to the visitors. Fanendo Adi scored on the pk to give Portland a 3-1 lead.
Next game for the Union will be next Friday against NYCFC at home. Will Jim Curtin stick with the same lineup next week, like he has in the past, or will Curtin make multiple changes to the starting lineup to try and get the season back on track?
- The Union should atleast give the 4-4-2 a try. A striker pairing of Sapong and Simpson, could be dangerous. Sapong is great at holding up the ball, and thus would allow Simpson to get more service in and around the box.
- Try moving Bedoya back to the #8 role, and try either Alberg, Herbers or Najem at the #10 spot.
- Union need more speed on the field. Multiple times throughout this game, Fabinho, Pontius and Ilsinho tried get pass Portland’s fullbacks but either lost the ball or couldn’t get separation due to lack of speed. Union have Epps and Picault, both of these players have speed that could help on counter-attacks and getting around defenders to get better quality crosses in.