Marvin Loria took advantage of Andreu Fontas' defensive error to score in first-half stoppage time, and the Portland Timbers held on for a 2-1 victory over Sporting Kansas City on Saturday night at Providence Park.

Loria's second goal of the season – coming after Fontas misjudged an attempted clearance – followed Dairon Asprilla's second of the campaign 10 minutes earlier, and sealed Portland's third win in their last four matches.

2020 MLS is Back Tournament MVP Sebastian Blanco also came on late in the second half for Portland, marking his first MLS appearance in nine months after suffering a torn ACL last September.

Earlier, Sporting right back Jaylin Lindsey opened the scoring with his second goal of the campaign, set up by the endeavor of forward Alan Pulido.

SKC applied most of the pressure after halftime, but couldn't find an equalizer and fell to their first defeat in 40 days.

Pulido had arguably the best chance at a leveler, striking the side netting on a volley from the left side of the penalty area in second-half stoppage time.

Goals

  • 28' – SKC – Jaylin Lindsey | WATCH
  • 36' – POR – Dairon Asprilla | WATCH
  • 45'+1' – POR – Marvin Loria | WATCH

Three Things

  • THE BIG PICTURE: Portland have been almost perpetually short-handed this season, and on this night they were without two healthy regulars in Felipe Mora and Yimmi Chara, who are both at Copa America with Chile and Colombia, respectively. Yet surely this squad is gaining momentum, and Blanco's return was a reminder that the Timbers may be as challenging a foe as any in MLS with their full cast.
  • MOMENT OF THE MATCH: It was an emotional and almost poetic moment when Blanco entered to a standing ovation from the near-capacity crowd at Providence Park, replacing his Argentine compatriot and friend Diego Valeri after they exchanged a hug on the touchline.
  • MAN OF THE MATCH: Diego Chara. His consistent importance to the Timbers was more obvious than usual in his return after missing three games with a hamstring strain before the international break. Chara made three tackles, won seven of the nine duels in which he engaged, completed 88% of his passes, and generally made it difficult for Kansas City to turn their possession into clear opportunities.

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