It was the latest installment of perhaps the fiercest rivalry in American soccer, but two very different teams emerged on the night as the Portland Timbers defeated the Seattle Sounders 2-1 in the fourth round of the 2019 U.S. Open Cup on Wednesday at Cheney Stadium in Tacoma, Wash.
Portland drew first blood, as new import striker Brian Fernandez cut in from the top of the box and unleashed a wicked shot to beat Sounders goalkeeper Bryan Meredith six minutes in. But Seattle tied it up just before halftime, as Victor Rodriguez's free kick took a big deflection on its way into the net.
Fernandez notched his second goal of the night five minutes into the second half, with a tap-in off Jeremy Ebobisse's cross. Once again, the Sounders had a late chance to tie it up, as Larrys Mabiala committed a handball in the box. But Rodriguez's subsequent penalty kick clanged off the crossbar, preserving the Timbers' lead, and they held on to advance in the tournament.
- 6' – POR – Brian Fernandez | WATCH
- 44' – SEA – Victor Rodriguez | WATCH
- 50' – POR – Brian Fernandez | WATCH
- THE BIG PICTURE: The numbers available were on stark display, as the Timbers used essentially a first-choice lineup and the Sounders used a reserve-heavy lineup on the night due to injuries and international absences. It was a back-and-forth affair, but Portland were the stronger side overall and showed far more cohesion.
- MOMENT OF THE MATCH: Brian Fernandez had a goal in each half and his winner will be very sweet indeed from a Timbers perspective.
- MAN OF THE MATCH: Easy call, as Fernandez has scored in each of his four games in a Timbers kit, and his brace powered the visitors to the win to move on in the Open Cup.
- SEA: Saturday, June 29 vs. Vancouver Whitecaps FC (10 pm ET | TSN, MLS LIVE on ESPN+)
- POR: U.S. Open Cup Round of 16 - June 18-23, opponent TBD