The Portland Timbers will enter the league break for the Copa America Centenario group stage on a high note after defeating the San Jose Earthquakes 1-0 on Wednesday at Providence Park. The Timbers grabbed all three points despite playing the entire second half with 10 men.
Both sides were missing key starters due to international duty, but despite playing up a man for 45 minutes, the Quakes could not find a goal to split the points.
The Timbers opened the scoring early, as Diego Valeri was brought down on the edge of the box 10 minutes in. His subsequent free kick was floated to the back post, and Liam Ridgewell headed the ball into the net for his first goal of the season.
- DEFENSIVE MILESTONE: Ridgewell grabbing his first goal of the year was nice, of course, but Portland will probably be as excited they finally notched a shutout on the night – their first of the season. For a team that has retooled in defense and on the backline this season due to departures and injury, finally getting the clean sheet will be seen as a big positive for the team moving into the next stage of the season.
- KINNEAR MISSED TRIP: While the Quakes knew captain Chris Wondolowski would not participate as he's with the US national team, head coach Dominic Kinnear also missed the trip unexpectedly, due to a "minor car accident" Wednesday morning, according to the club. Fortunately, they also announced he was not seriously injured, certainly good news for everybody.
- REMATCH COMING: There's less than two weeks before these teams face off again, as they were drawn together for the Fourth Round of the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup. Given it's a different competition and the Copa America players could still be away on June 14, the feel might be different, but the single-elimination format means it should be a good game, and both teams will likely be up for the challenge.
- POR: U.S. Open Cup: Tuesday, June 14 vs. San Jose (10:30pm ET)
- SJ: U.S. Open Cup: Tuesday, June 14 at Portland (10:30pm ET)