Touch compilation for Ayala vs Seattle.

He had a really nice game. Honestly I’m most impressed with his communication on the field. He’s talking constantly to his teammates, pointing to where he wants the ball or pointing to a teammate that the player with the ball should pass to. Doing all that at the age of 20 is pretty impressive to me. He’s also not afraid to get on the ball and command the play, which is something I’ve criticized Paredes for in the past.

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Just fyi there’s several clips where he doesn’t touch the ball, I tried to highlight some of his defensive movements and occupation of space. It was another aspect of his game I was impressed with. He also was constantly pressing anyone who tried to pick up the ball in the midfield

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Thanks for the compilation, especially for showing defensive actions where he doesn't touch the ball. Most compilations leave those out and it's a whole lot better to have them. It gives a sense of his defensive ability.

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Nice work again on the touch compilation! It's nice to see Ayala coming along. He had several nice balls and was very active and supportive. I think my criticism is that he fades a bit as the game wears on - as any player can. I blame him for not getting back on the seattle goal. There was a big gap between back line and midfield and he could have helped out. Gio yanked him soon thereafter, and rightfully so.

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I don't know... Ayala is kind of involved defending the left side. He's a little slow to get back, but Santi is just sitting there ball watching the whole time. Mosquera is also kinda hanging out not really marking anybody. It was a collective fail.


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It was a collective fail but Ayala is a dm and there was a huge gap between back line and midfield, not so much the touchline. He coulda helped.

The video compilation showed he's got game, no doubt. He was spraying balls really well.

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I think that was more of a product of it being the first significant game time he’s gotten in a long time. He’s coming back from injury and isn’t fully fit. Watching him while making the video it was clear that he was pretty tired after the first half, he was casually jogging around a lot more and wasn’t nearly as active. With more game time I don’t expect that to be much of a problem

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Yea, and on top of that he was prolly super pumped up and went hard for that first half.

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My biggest wish is that the Timbers don't devolve into a team where wins against Seattle are the measuring stick of a season, the way a 1-11 college football team thinks their season is fine because at least their one win was against their biggest rival. "At least we beat the Sounders" doesn't really bring me a lot of comfort if the Timbers are one of the 38% of teams that doesn't make the ridiculously generous playoffs.

I love watching the Timbers beat the Sounders, don't get me wrong, but as you say if this doesn't spur them on to start consistently playing better and making a dent in the league as a whole, winning a rivalry game doesn't mean a whole hell of a lot to me for more than a day.

Hopefully Cincinnati will be like picking up where they left off - it's clear from the last 20 of Saturday that they have the ability, but do they have the mentality?

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Two things that stood out to me:

1. Attacking is a lot easier when you can run at the defenders. Goals 3 & 4 really showcased that quick counter attack that the Timbers prefer -- with so many injuries maybe that wasn't as feasible in previous games, both from tired legs and from lacking the correct players

2. It was nice to see the team shoot the ball. Goals 1, 3, and 4 weren't truly amazing opportunities, and it was nice to see players shoot rather than the usual waiting for the perfect pass. Though, that probably is a function of the first point: a lot easier to put a powerful shot on target when you are moving straight to the opposite goal

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A couple notes: Window closes Monday. We’re supposed to be adding a CB, yeah?

Secondly: I pushed back on your score line prediction saying it was very bold to predict multiple goals for the Timbers. I was right for 75 minutes. Sometimes it’s better to be happy than right. But big props to you for knowing this unknowable league and rivalry.

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I think Eric Miller was brought in as the stopgap defender until the summer, when there should be more available options. I wouldn't expect too much in these last few days of this window.

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Clarke was still reporting a new CB for this window in the last couple weeks. And a possible midfielder.

We’ll see what happens. Zup and McGraw are a competent pairing and good enough going forward. Dropping a third guy in there to really let Mosquera, and to a lesser extent Bravo, get up could be interesting. Especially if he was highly mobile.

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Since most everything on this site is about the thorns and this is the most recent article on the Timbers, I have no choice but to put my comment on the upcoming match here. All the talk about Gio not getting the job done with this team have brought up legitimate points that I agree with some but not all. My biggest gripe about Gio is it often looks like he doesn't get the team revved up and ready to come out fired up on road matches. I know it's tough for all teams to win on the road, but the Timbers too often don't look very ready coming out on the road. It was great they found the fire in them to erupt on rival Seattle, but they need to have that and show it in all of their other matches and that is the current question about this team.

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Would loved to have watch the match, but like some of us fans we don't have access/ can't afford subscriptions to Apple TV etal. I know "its business" but I don't have to like it. I listen on the radio but the play-by-play (pass-by-pass) of the match just isn't there on the broadcast. Watching on the comuter isn't mutch better.

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6 days later... an admission. I didn't wonder if we'd win, rather how many goals would we ship. Having suffered the 6 goal disgrace a few years back, I feared the worst. When Ruidiaz finally broke through, I wondered if these Timbers could keep it close.

And I was wrong. Happily.

But the match leaves me with questions -

1. Is Evander healthy? Inspired? Still learning the league?

2. How much better has David Ayala become in a year? (seemingly a lot)

3. What if we had a physio who could keep our midfield healthy?

4. Will anyone be scared of Franck Boli up top?

5. Will Jaro's clean up of a double drop from Frei reignite his high goals per minute pre ACL

6. How long before someone offers mad money (by MLS standards) for Mosquera?

7. Between a healthy Paredes and Ayala - who gets the nod?

8. Can any of the ruthlessness shown in the last 20 minutes carry over to Cincy - and can we beat after a long flight?

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1. Still learning the league. Still coming back from injury. He'll be fine

2. A whole lot

3. There are definitely questions to be asked there, but it's a very complex thing to figure out the root cause of

4. Nobody needs to be. It's better that way. He can scrap in goals until the Timbers can buy someone that is a legitimate fear in the hearts of other teams

5. No. Sadly

6. After 2024. Let's not push him out the door just yet - let's take advantage of some of that prime-year skill first

7. Ayala, but not by much

8. If the Timbers can't adapt after a three hour flight taken two days before a game, they have bigger problems than your 1-7. That's not even the longest flight they'll take this season. I want the last 20 mentality for 90 on Saturday as well, but the flight shouldn't really factor into it at all.

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I've travel with the Timbers to a couple matches every year. Check the record after 4 hour flights...

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What stood out: (Aside from Asprilla's goal that seemed to ignite everything)

Fogaca should start. Santi is a 10. Paredes and Chara in the engine room works like a charm.

If it were up to me:

Fogaca .... Boli .... Mosquera

.................Santi .........

......chara ..........Paredes

Bravo ... McGraw .. Zup ... Miller


Evander will work out, but clearly Santi comes alive in the middle. He's a 10, not a winger. It does make me wonder why they brought in a 10 when they had one.

Ayala is coming along, but I prefer Paredes and his athleticism. When the team went on its run last year, Paredes was a part of it. Perhaps it will be Ayala and Paredes together in the future.

Mosquera is a good RB, but I'd like to see him terrorizing RBs on the regular as a RW. Miller would just have to play D.

The squad needs goal scorers on the field, and they seem to come alive when they have multiple forwards on the field at the same time. So, bring them on at the same time. Start Fogaca and Boli. Fogaca just showed he can cut in and shoot and I'm sure he could dribble out wide so put him out on the wing. The roster has more forwards than anything else on the squad, so use them. Also, Niezgoda is going to be a good option. Trust me on this.

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