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Played
August 21, 2013 11:00 PM EDT
Providence Park — Portland, Oregon
Referee:‬ R. Salazar‎
Attendance:‬ 20674‎
 

Portland Timbers 3-3 Real Salt Lake: 10-man RSL escapes Portland with late equalizer

Thrilling proceedings saw Real Salt Lake just barely keep its hold on first place with a stoppage-time goal from substitute Cole Grossman.

By Keith Hickey

Real Salt Lake
George Frey
With a trio of starters missing and its tenuous hold on first place in the Western Conference on the line, 10-man Real Salt Lake managed to escape Jeld-Wen Field with some late heroics.

Substitute Cole Grossman's stoppage-time goal salvaged a thrilling 3-3 draw for RSL against the Portland Timbers, in a rematch of the recent U.S. Open Cup semifinal bout won by RSL.

RSL was without starting goalkeeper Nick Rimando (illness), forward Alvaro Saborio (calf) and midfielder and captain Kyle Beckerman (suspension) for the match, and the absences showed as Portland took the early advantage.

In the 24th minute. Diego Valeri's curling free kick was headed in by Rodney Wallace, who beat rooted backup goalkeeper Jeff Attinella in front of the raucous Timbers Army to open the scoring.

RSL defender Nat Borchers leveled the scoreline on 38 minutes, though, as Javier Morales chased down a poorly cleared free kick and stole the ball from Valeri in the right corner. His cross found Yordany Alvarez, and although the Cuban midfielder's header was saved by Donovan Ricketts, Borchers was sitting in perfect position to tap the ball home off the rebound.

Morales was dragged down in the box by Portland center back Andrew Jean-Baptiste a few minutes later, drawing a penalty. The RSL playmaker stepped up and converted his effort to put the visiting side up 2-1 just before halftime.

Portland had its turn from the spot in the 57th minute, when Brandon McDonald swiped a bouncing ball with his elbow. Valeri finished from the spot to level the score at 2-2.

RSL lost Alvarez to a red card in the 79th minute when he was sent off for a high, reckless challenge on Diego Chara, and the Timbers made the advantage count when sub Kalif Alhassan scored in the 86th minute. Nat Borchers touched away a cross into but got tangled up with Jose Antonio Valencia on the ground, allowing an unmarked Alhassan to shoot in the corner and seemingly seal three points and a tie atop the Western Conference.

The dramatics extended into stoppage time, though, when Grossman collected a rebound inside the box and slotted home to make it 3-3 in the 94th minute to force the draw and keep RSL in sole possession of first place in the West and in the race for the MLS Supporters' Shield.

The two sides play again in eight days, with a rematch slated for Rio Tinto Stadium.


Portland Timbers

1
Donovan Ricketts
Goalkeeper
 - 
5
 - 
-
Mobi Fehr
Defender
 - 
16
 - 
44
Pa-Modou Kah
Defender
 - 
8
Diego Valeri
Midfielder
57′ 88′
 - 
14
Ben Zemanski
Midfielder
 - 
21
 - 
6
 - 
22
Rodney Wallace
Defender
24′
 - 
-
Ryan Johnson
Striker
63′
 - 

Real Salt Lake

 - 
24
Jeff Attinella
Goalkeeper
 - 
2
 - 
6
 - 
17
 - 
14
 - 
11
Javier Morales
Midfielder
43′ 59′
 - 
-
 - 
20
Ned Grabavoy
Midfielder
 - 
9
 - 
8
Joao Plata
Striker
82′
 - 
10

Substitutes

-
Milos Kocic
Goalkeeper
 - 
-
Ryan Miller
Defender
88′
 - 
31
 - 
11
 - 
11
Kalif Alhassan
Midfielder
79′ 86′
 - 
15
Steven Evans
Midfielder
 - 
20
 - 

Substitutes

 - 
1
E. Fernández
Goalkeeper
 - 
29
K. Mansally
Defender
 - 
5
Lovel Palmer
Midfielder
 - 
12
 - 
21
Luis Gil
Midfielder
62′
 - 
49

Coach/Manager

-
 - 

Coach/Manager

 - 
-
 
  • Goal
  • Own Goal
  • Penalty
  • Penalty Missed
  • Yellow Card
  • Assist
  • Penalty Save
  • Penalty Shootout Goal
  • Penalty Shootout Miss
  • Yellow Card / Red Card
  • Red Card
  • Substitution IN
  • Substitution OUT
  • Injury
  • Goal.com Rating
  • Goal.com Man of the Match
  • Goal.com Flop of the Match
  • Top & Flop Global Ranking
  • Fans' Man of the Match
  • Fans' Flop of the Match
Results
 
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Clint Dempsey Clint Dempsey
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4 2
Dominic Dwyer Dominic Dwyer
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4 1