This is the best I've seen the offense perform in a long, long time. I was surprised that Tigres didn't just dominate after the Red Card - the Timbers looked so much better down a man than I thought they could.

I really expected to be blown out. Instead it's just a typical Timbers coaching loss - high line beaten for a goal, expected inability to cover the far post on corners. It makes me wonder what the team could do with better coaching.

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Shameless plug -- video up for Santiago Moreno for his two sub appearances vs San Jose and Tigres. He’s been a very polarizing player recently, with some questioning if he’s really all that good. And from what I’ve gathered from the past two games, he’s still a damn good player, and he was really good. Picked up some really good spots, had some wonderful touches (his touch and turn in minute 7:30 on the video stands out), and some great passes. Most of the clips vs Tigres are him putting in defensive work, and he had to do a TON of defense. They mostly attacked down his side, and he did very well covering space and teaming up with Bravo to shut that side down. I’m really hoping Moreno gets the start next match because I think he’s ready ball out

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Oh yeah, I almost forgot, this was a return for Ivacic! Still not entirely sure what’s going on there, but it was good to have him back. Remember when we (most of us I believe) were saying Ivacic was the better shot stopper but Bingham was the better distributor? Yeah that’s gone out the window hasn’t it. The difference in distribution was night and day. Ivacic didn’t kick the ball out of bounds four times a game (or at all) and his long balls had purpose, it was great. I hope Ivacic stays as the starter

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After watching other better MLS teams fall to the great Liga MX teams like Monterrey and America, I think our performance might be our most impressive performance of the year. Before the card I would go so far to say that we were the better team. Tigres had very few chances, and we looked extremely dangerous in the attack. We looked organized! And coherent! And well coached! And even when we went down a man, we held on until the 80th minute, and we conceded only due to a defensive mental lapse. Against one of the best teams on the continent. That’s impressive as hell, and this kind of performance is the type of thing that can take us on a run. I give Gio a lot of credit, the players look far more motivated than they have in recent months, and we look a lot better

All the Evander stuff is bs. First challenge is absolutely a yellow, it was a clear elbow to the head and Evander even jabs it out a bit. Second one, he’s just trying to get out of the way, clearly trying to get his arm over the player. Not sure why he’s doing that but I feel like it’s pretty clear to see that, nothing intentional at all. Now for next game, I’m really hoping we stick with the 4-3-3 and stick Moreno in the middle and let him cook. He’s played quite well the past two games off the bench, and actually had some really nice set pieces.

Mora was awesome, his injuries have not affected his mind one bit. He combines so well with the rest of the team and always pops up in the right space. And is great at drawing fouls, which is how we got our free kick for Evander to score. Bringing Niezgoda made no sense. Taking off Mora is fine, he’s coming back from injury, but if Boli isn’t ready to go 45 then I would’ve rather seen Nathan or Asprilla up top. In a 4-4-1 down a man, we needed our striker to play defense like hell, hold up the ball, and be threat in behind with speed. Niezgoda provides none of those. He had a few good moments but there were at least two times during counter attacks where one of our wingers was dribbling down the line and he just drifted to the far post and waited, not providing any support or anything. He’s gotta support or make a run in behind to take a defender with him to open up space. Whether you like Jaro or not, he is not the man for being a single striker while down a man against one of the best teams in the region. That one’s on Gio

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Looks like there is reason for hope in Timbertown after a pretty hopeless season so far. The Timbers were up for the game and it was exciting for a change! Evander's petulance and Mosquera ball watching on the corner were relatively isolated lapses that probably caused the loss. At the end, the announcers said the Timbers are through to the knockout round regardless of the outcome of the Tigres/San Jose game due to goal differential? I don't see San Jose pummeling Tigres 4-0 or whatever, but strange things happen sometimes. Aloha.

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Jul 27, 2023·edited Jul 27, 2023

If the recap is going to editorialize ("What he did to earn the red card was childish and can't happen again"), at least describe the offense. Those of us who were at the stadium only saw a brief replay that was very ambiguous--in fact it looked to me as if it could have been accidental. If consensus is that it wasn't, I want to hear why. I don't come to StumptownFooty just for the comments, interesting as they often are. I also want to know what I missed, either at the stadium or at home, and I can't trust the official MLS and Timbers sites to tell me without bias.

(And what does "I guess these are the cards the Timbers have to deal with nowadays" mean, exactly?)

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So just to comment on the all around comments.

1) "the offensive performance of the year."

A) based on who we were playing, I would say it was one of the best all around performances of the year. Especially when we kept a very good team off the board down a man for the entire second half. However, best offensive game? No. That still goes to the Seattle game. In this game we had a lot of chances to be threatening around the box and most times we shot ourselves in the foot. In no way was the team clinical in the box, or efficient.

2. Still #gioout?

A) yup. Being #gioout does not mean that the team is playing bad. Just like the team winning a game here and there doesn't mean the team is playing good. When I look at the whole team situation, I see a couple troubling things when it is related to gio, and a couple wins is not going to change that. One of the things I see is.......

B) why does the team not try at all for most of the season and the only time they do try is either, playing a rivalry game. Or playing a team like tigres, that they know will give them recognition if they do well. That tells me that they are playing for themselves. Not the team and not for Gio. Now I say that because how can they play so well against Seattle, Columbus, tigres, and then play like crap to mid table and bottom dweller teams. Somehow gio just gets it right against really good teams and really wrong against shit teams? That does not make sense. If anything, it tells me that the team has the ability but either don't think they need to put in the work every game, (Which is on gio and making sure the team has a clear understanding of expectations)or they don't care to put in the effort for gio every game. Both of those outcomes are not favorable to gio. Now you want more evidence that it is likely one of those situations, ok......

C) the things players have said last year and this year. Players showing their frustrations. Moreno, Williamson, zuparic, ivacic. have I missed anyone? Players coming out and saying they are upset in one way or another and 3 of those 4 specifically pointing the finger at gio. Not under spencer or porter have we had so many players publicly point the finger at the coach. Need more proof Gio should go. Ok...........

D) tactics. This one is not hard at all people. I could go deep into this comment and post how inept ge is but for people who maybe don't see it the same way I do, or others. Think of it like this. The coach teaches positioning. Be it offensively or defensively. The coach lines the players up in a formation. (4-2-3-1, 4-3-3) then gives them a system. (Press, counter pressing, mid-block, low block) the coaches job is to look at the players available and say, what is the best formation and system to get our best available players on the field? Once they have that figures out (to the best of their ability) it is the coaches job to show the players how to move in unison to cut out passing lanes and trap the opponents, forcing a turnover. (On the defensive side of the ball) and to teach the team how to move into those same passing lanes on the offensive side of the ball and create goal scoring opportunities. Be it from overloads, or off ball movement through patterns. That is something Columbus does extremely well. When you see a majority of your players standing around while others have the ball, that is a big indication that they aren't being taught those thing. They aren't being taught how to do it within the confines of gios formation and system.

Now that is one side of the equation. The things gio is not responsible for is a player shooting the ball to the moon. Misplaced passes. Dribbling into defenders. Those are all players choices based on talent and player IQ. now you judge each thing individually. How often do you see anything on the field that looks rehearsed? How many times are players getting into good position with quality chances to score? Just being around the box is not a quality chance. A quality chance is from a defender being out of position cause by those overloads and movement/passing patterns. The reality is that I don't see anything relating to "coaches responsibilities" out on the field. And that worries me because that is literally the things he is responsible for.

Now RCTEYEDEE has asked on many occasions "how many players have gotten better under gio." I don't think it is about players getting better in the finishing, speed, physicality, ect, ect side of things. I think gio is so bad at doing the things I mentioned above that he can't tell what a players best position is in certain formations. He doesn't know what the best system is with certain players on the field. He can't adjust and doesn't have the acumen to do it correctly. Then on top of that, he can't train the players to find quality chances around the box. Or how to get them to defend as one unit. And that hinders what we would call, "getting better"

Gio definitely needs to go, because

A) this team is given such a low bar to achieve by him, that they feel they can play like crap for most of the year with no repercussions, and somehow that is acceptable to fans.

B) he is setting the team and individual players to fail with his lack of any really tactical intelligence and player placement. That in turn is getting the worst out of the players, not the best.

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Of all the things last night.

That was Bravo's best game as a Timber. He was an absolute beast.

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Overall, just a huge disappointment. The second yellow just ruined the game. Credit to the Timbers for trying their darndest a man down. As for the second yellow: yes, soft, but you really can't put your hands on another guy's head and put yourself in a bad situation. He's gotta learn from that.

The broadcasters said they are moving on, despite the loss, so mission accomplished and good job! It looks like they are highly motivated. Mora looked really good!

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so I’so m O n hi

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OT a little bit, but Timbers are apparently about to sign a Brazilian winger, a 22 YO kid currently playing in Portugal:

https://theathletic.com/4727891/2023/07/27/portland-timbers-antony-arouca/ (behind paywall but I believe a certain number of articles are free every month)

Whether that's as a Yimmi replacement or a Moreno replacement for next year, it's at least encouraging that Portland's starting on their roster revamp.

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And despite all that, the Timbers lost...

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What a beautiful goal by Evander. Granted, I think Mora deserves a yellow for the celebration!

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Welcome to the Rose City:

Antony - the winger. Smooth runner and clean shot. Got a good feeling about this.

Bryan Acosta - midfielder. We really needed some depth and/or starter and he has a good resume. I like this acquisition as well.

Nice job Ned for this transfer window, if you include the new CB. Let's go!

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There have been red cards shown in over 40% of the Leagues Cup matches so far

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Round of 32 matchup: Monterrey. They look really potent up top with Bertarame and Funes Mori - what a combo, and they have guys whipping in crosses on the ground, so they have service. The Timbers are at home, so that's a plus, and they are motivated. This will be a stiff test of the defense against a team that ran Seattle and RSL out of the park. Will they do the same to the Timbers? On offense, the Timbers will be missing Evander who can maintain possession and provide some offense or key passes. That responsibility may fall to Moreno, or at least I hope it does. I hope Moreno takes the 10 or the eight. This is a chance to see how the Timbers stack up against a regional power, and it's awesome that it will be at home. It should be an electric atmosphere.

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