And they did so in glorious style.
RSL cruised to a 4-1 road victory at Providence Park on Wednesday night after the match ended with three red cards, two for Portland and one for Salt Lake.
A beautiful strike from outside the box by club legend Kyle Beckerman in the 10th minute gave RSL an early lead they would never relinquish.
Despite missing a considerable number of players because of both injury and international duty, including playmaker Darlington Nagbe, the Timbers were able to pressure RSL and create chances throughout the first half and seemed poised to compete in the second 45 minutes.
However; a second half which featured three RSL goals, a brace from Joao Plata and two Portland red cards will have Timbers supporters eager to forget Wednesday’s game permanently.
- 10' – RSL – Kyle Beckerman Watch
- 50' – RSL – Joao Plata (PK) Watch
- 68' – RSL – Albert Rusnak Watch
- 80' – RSL – Joao Plata Watch
- 93 – POR – Jack Barmby Watch
- FINALLY, THREE FOR RSL: The Portland Timbers had boasted a 4-0-4 record against RSL in their last 8 matches heading into Wednesday’s home match at Providence Park. So, for RSL to snatch not only 3 points but to also put up four goals against their longtime foils had to be all the sweeter for Mike Petke and company. A wire-to-wire display, indeed, RSL flexed their muscle and continued a roller-coaster 2017 MLS season.
- IT’S RAINING CARDS: There is certainly no love lost between these two teams and the physical nature of Wednesday’s game made that abundantly clear. The 90 minutes were riddled with spattering’s of highly physical challenges in addition to 3 red cards, 7 yellow cards and 24 fouls.
- BECKERMAN’S EVENTFUL EVENING: Speaking of physicality, the MLS all-time leader in fouls, Beckerman, had himself an intriguing night at the office. The RSL captain displayed one of his many offensive tricks with his curling finish from long distance that set the tone for the match. His controversial interaction with Timbers striker Fanendo Adi early in the second half ended his night with a straight red card to go along with the Portland forward's.
- POR: Sunday, July 23 at Vancouver Whitecaps (6:30 pm ET | MLS LIVE)
- RSL: Saturday, July 22 vs. Sporting Kansas City (9:00 pm ET | MLS LIVE )