Apr 28, 2012, 4:52 PM EST
Man of the Match: Saturday’s first match of the MLS weekend was light on big performances, but Impact center back Shavar Thomas stepped forcefully into critical challenges and generally helped reduce Timbers striker Kris Boyd’s impact. His work was critical early in a game that was scoreless through 75 minutes.
Packaged for take-away:
- For Major League Soccer’s preservation, there can’t be many of these. The first match of nine on Saturday was, in official parlance, a “stinker.” You get these every now and then, even in leagues more mature than MLS. A lot of things come together to make one dip into the “gotta get some coffee zone.”
- First, that field is atrocious. It’s a bad artificial turf laid over a concrete floor. (Very old school that way.) So the players have trouble corralling passes, which makes for a disheveled match. Portland Timbers coach John Spencer called the turf “horrendous.”
- Second, there’s not a lot of creativity between either team. In fact, there’s not a whole lot of good going on with either team right now. Expansion Montreal will remain a work in progress for some time, and Portland just isn’t much to shout about on the road. Never has been.
- Throw in a couple of replacement fullbacks (who are less inclined to scoot forward) and a couple of others manning less familiar roles (something else that encourages a conservative pose) and you get a match like this.
- Either way, Montreal will be happy with its second win of 2012 and its first clean sheet.
- The game did open up, at least, over the last 15 minutes.
- And yet even then, the sides combined for just five corner kicks, a pretty good indication of this one.
- We already addressed the game’s controversial penalty kick here. (Video of the sequence is there, too.)
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Dec 20, 2014, 12:13 PM EST
Spurs seal third-straight win in all competitions to move up to sixth.
Dec 20, 2014, 12:05 PM EST
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Dec 20, 2014, 12:03 PM EST
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Dec 20, 2014, 11:58 AM EST
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Dec 20, 2014, 11:55 AM EST
Saints smash three past sorry Everton,
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Dec 20, 2014, 11:52 AM EST
United loses ground to No. 2 Manchester City, which trounced Crystal Palace, while Villa grabs its 20th point of the season.
Dec 20, 2014, 10:57 AM EST
It’s half time in the six 10 a.m. ET games in the PL. Here’s what’s going on…
Dec 20, 2014, 9:52 AM EST
Huge relegation six-pointer at Loftus Road. Watch it live, here.
Dec 20, 2014, 9:51 AM EST
Abel Hernandez and Nikica Jelavic will form the Tigers strike force.
Dec 20, 2014, 9:47 AM EST
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Dec 20, 2014, 9:42 AM EST
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Dec 20, 2014, 9:41 AM EST
Andy Carroll starts up top with Diafra Sakho, with Stewart Downing in support.
Dec 20, 2014, 9:36 AM EST
Citizens go level on points with Chelsea at the top of the PL.
Dec 20, 2014, 9:23 AM EST
United looks to keep back with their noisy neighbors this morning on NBCSN.
Dec 20, 2014, 9:08 AM EST
The NBC team discuss when Lamps may head stateside.
Dec 20, 2014, 8:11 AM EST
Sterling, 20, follows the likes of Rooney, Messi and Aguero after being named the best youngster in European soccer.
Dec 20, 2014, 7:20 AM EST
Can the Citizens make it six wins on the spin without a striker? Watch live, here.
Dec 20, 2014, 7:10 AM EST
How and where to watch every single PL game from Week 17 live online or via the app.
Dec 19, 2014, 11:20 PM EST
Harry Redknapp believes he could be Ravel Morrison’s “last chance” to prove he is ready to play top-flight football.
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