PORTLAND, Oregon – Although Video Review technology was officially unveiled in league play this weekend, Sunday’s game was not the first time a 2017 Portland Timbers match turned on a play overturned via a video replay.
Video Review was tested during the preseason and during a Feb. 9 match vs. Real Salt Lake, it led to a straight red card to midfielder Diego Chara, who connected with an elbow to the head of RSL's Yura Movsisyan.
Video Review played a critical role in Sunday’s contest against the LA Galaxy when with the scored tied at 1-1, LA's Gyasi Zardes stunned the home fans with what appeared to be a go-ahead goal.
The Galaxy’s excitement and the Timbers’ anguish would be short-lived. Video Review showed that Zardes’ hand made contact with the ball shortly before his goal-scoring finish, a play falling under one of four match-changing incidents that can now be reviewed and potentially overturned.
The goal was waved off and the Timbers would ultimately pull away with a 3-1 result, compounding the mounting struggles of a Galaxy team now winless in seven matches. Last week’s scoreless draw against Seattle was the only point the team has accrued over that span.
Schmid was not disputing the call following the match.
“It was the correct reasoning, but it’s a goal that we should have just headed in,” Schmid said, noting that it would have changed the complexion of the game.
Schmid’s counterpart, Portland Timbers manager Caleb Porter, agreed.
“In that moment, going down 2-1 vs. staying at 1-1, that was a key moment in the match,” said the Timbers boss.
Some in Portland believed another play was deserving of Video Review. During a breakaway in the 41st minute, Galaxy defender Dave Romney collided with Portland’s Fanendo Adi in the box.
Despite shouts for a penalty kick, referee Drew Fischer waved play on, later stating: “In my opinion, the challenge that led to Adi going to ground in the box was normal contact between two players.”