July 22, 2018 / 5:24 AM / 2 months ago

Timbers draw Impact, extend unbeaten run to 13

Samuel Armenteros and Diego Valeri each scored their seventh goals of the season, helping the Portland Timbers come back twice from a goal down to salvage a 2-2 draw and run their league-best unbeaten run to 13 matches.

Valeri’s goal came with some controversy, with replays suggesting the Argentine used his left arm to push off Montreal goalkeeper Evan Bush to win the ball in the air. In the aftermath, Montreal coach Remi Garde was ejected for his protests by referee Fotis Bazakos.

Montreal forward Matteo Mancosu scored his second goal of the season and midfielder Saphir Taider added his fifth and fourth in his last four games. The Impact (9-12-1, 28 points), who arrived in Portland having won six of their last eight, drew an MLS match for the first time since June 17, 2017.

After the Impact took a 2-1 lead into halftime, Valeri equalized for the Timbers (8-3-7, 31 points) with a header from a sequence that began with Sebastian Blanco’s firmly struck cross from the left.

Bush reacted to push the cross skyward with both hands. But as he attempted to clear the second ball away from danger, Valeri instead reached the ball first to send a header into an open goal in the 65th minute.

Replays suggested Valeri had pushed off to keep Bush from punching the ball away first, but Bazakos and his crew opted against a video review. There was a brief pause, however, as Garde was dismissed.

Portland had the better chances to secure all three points late, coming closest when a swift left-to-right attacking move ended with Blanco striking a first-time blast just wide of the right post in the 73rd minute.

Taider put Montreal in the lead in the 23rd minute after Alejandro Silva’s exceptional work to steal a pass and spot the midfielder at the penalty arc. Taider slotted a low shot inside the left post to beat Timbers goalkeeper Jeff Attinella.

Armenteros leveled on a mistake from Bush, who dropped an easily catchable ball at the feet of the Portland striker, who struck it off the bounce into the net from about seven yards out in the 39th minute.

Mancosu returned the lead to Montreal two minutes later. Ignacio Piatti spotted Mancosu with a long diagonal ball from inside his own half. Mancosu timed his run to stay onside, sprinted behind Portland’s backline and then drove a finish between Attinella and the left post.

—Field Level Media

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