Valeri, Jewsbury, Adi scores, Timbers top Sporting KC 3-0
PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Diego Valeri, Jack Jewsbury and Fanendo Adi scored second-half goals while both teams played a man short to help the Portland Timbers beat Sporting Kansas City 3-0 on Sunday.
In the 65th minute, a left wing cross from Vytas Vytautas Andriuskevicius was too high for Jack McInerney to head on goal. But it bounced right to Valeri just inside the penalty area, where he blasted a right-footed shot past goalkeeper Alec Kann for his 10th goal of the season.
“Big players, especially attacking players, come up with goals,” Portland coach Caleb Porter said. “Valeri’s doing what the big players do on good teams. You come up with big goals. He’s done that for us time and again.”
The Timbers put the game out of reach late in the game. In the 87th minute, Darlington Nagbe made a series of twists and turns to maintain possession in the Sporting penalty area, before laying off a pass for Jewsbury to smash into the net for his first goal.
“Obviously (Darlington) got into a good spot and I just tried to trail the play a little bit. I think he spun the guy two or three times and was able to lay it off to me,” Jewsbury said. “To be honest, I was just trying to pick the corner. It was nice to see it hit the back of the net and get that second goal, for sure.
Adi followed three minutes later by collecting his own blocked shot in the penalty area and converting his second attempt for his 11 goal.
Portland played most of the match with 10 men, after Diego Chara was shown a red card in the 12th minute for apparently elbowing Sporting midfielder Benny Feilhaber in the face after the two players got tangled up.
“We actually played better when we were 11 vs. 11 than when we went up a man. We got too direct, which I thought let them off the hook too many times,” Sporting Kansas City coach Peter Vermes said. “When you’re up a man, you got to make the other team work and we didn’t do that. We just kept giving them the ball back by playing direct up the field.”
Sporting’s man advantage was wiped out in the 39th minute, when Soni Mustivar’s attempt to control the ball instead caught Valeri in the knee, earning him an early exit.
Portland (8-8-8) snapped a two-game winning streak and moved back into a playoff position, two points ahead of Vancouver for the final spot in the Western Conference. Kansas City (10-11-4) had its two-game winning streak snapped and remained in fifth place, one point ahead of the Timbers.