The Portland Timbers closed the season in style, rolling off three consecutive wins to gain momentum before the Audi 2015 MLS Cup Playoffs. They also were rewarded with two consecutive MLS Player of the Week awards. as the North American Soccer Reporters (NASR) voted Portland playmaker Darlington Nagbe the Week 34 winner one week after Timbers striker Fanendo Adi won the honors.
Nagbe scored two goals in the first half to start the Timbers on their way to a 4-1 home win against Colorado, adding a second-half assist as Portland put the game out of reach.
He put the Timbers on the board in the fifth minute, rifling home a 23-yard free kick to give Portland the early 1-0 advantage (watch here). Dominque Badji equalized for the Rapids minutes later, but Nagbe got the lead back in the 33rd, heading home a Lucas Melano cross to make it 2-1 (watch). He assisted on the Timbers' third goal, driving through the Colorado defense before finding Jorge Villafaña for his 63rd minute strike (watch).
The three-goal win helped the Timbers clinch the third seed in the Western Conference and a Knockout Round home game against Sporting Kansas City on Thursday night (10 pm ET; UniMás in the US, TSN in Canada).
Nagbe's win was far less decisive than his team's victory, as he tied with the Montreal Impact's two-goal hero, Didier Drogba, in first-place votes. Nagbe had one more second-place vote than Drogba, giving him the Week 34 title.
The MLS Player of the Week is selected each week of the regular season by a panel of journalists from NASR. The group consists of members of print, television, radio and online media.