Portland welcomed Inter Miami to Providence Park for the first-ever meeting and the home side was victorious 1-0. Portland continues their streak being the hottest team in the MLS and sees the unbeaten streak stretched to eight (7-1-0).
Despite Miami regulars in the bottom of the Eastern Conference, Portland could not secure an early goal past Phil Neville’s side that lined up in a 3-4-3. The Timbers were the aggressors in the first half: controlling possession and doubling Miami’s shots in the opening 45 minutes.
Portland continued controlling the affair in the following half and had several chances at the doorstep of Miami’s goal but two big Miami blocks kept the game scoreless.
It was seemingly not Portland’s day despite the stats saying Portland should have easily taken three points at Providence Park. Unlike moments earlier in the season, the Timbers did not get frustrated and finally prevailed from a corner in the 83rd minute.
Jarosław Niezgoda was subbed into the game just a minute earlier, and his strike was his second goal of the season in as many shots. Predictably, the assist came from Portland’s most important player in the last month, Sebastian Blanco.
The game was slow for two-thirds of the match but to close out the affair there was plenty of action. Just minutes after the Niezgoda goal, Miami scored but a push-off foul in the box was noticed taking away the potential equalizer.
Portland subbed in defensive reinforcements after plus-eight stoppage time was announced and was successful through tense final moments. With the victory, Portland collects their first clean sheet since an away victory at Vancouver and now obtain a positive goal-differential on the campaign.
The Timbers strengthen their hold on fourth place in the Western Conference with 46 points going into an international break. After a 13-day break, Portland heads to L.A to face the Galaxy on Saturday, October 16th.