Sebastian Blanco scored his team-leading fourth goal of the season, Fanendo Adi added his second and the Portland Timbers completed a 3-0 victory Sunday afternoon to end visiting New York City FC’s unbeaten start to the season.
Larrys Mabiala added his first career MLS goal in the second half to seal Portland’s second consecutive home win after the Timbers (2-3-2) began the season winless in five matches on the road.
Jeff Attinella made three saves in his first start of 2018 to help Portland preserve its first shutout. Center back and former Timbers captain Liam Ridgewell also returned to coach Giovanni Savarese’s starting lineup after he was benched for the last four matches.
Despite holding only 25.4 percent of the possession, the Timbers defeated a NYCFC side (5-1-2) that was the 12th in league history to play its first seven games without defeat.
New York City was shut out for the first time in 14 regular-season matches, stretching back to Sept. 9 of last season when it lost to the Timbers 1-0 at Yankee Stadium. Toronto FC was the last team other than Portland to hold NYCFC scoreless, in a 4-0 home victory on July 30.
Blanco gave Portland the lead in the 26th minute. Andres Flores struck a looping cross from the right toward the back post, where Blanco leaped over Anton Tinnerholm to send a header into the top right corner.
Adi made it 2-0 a dozen minutes later. Diego Valeri drove in a low shot from the right. Sean Johnson dove right to palm it away, but only onto the path of Adi, who easily slid it into an open net.
Mabiala made it 3-0 in the 66th minute when he shook his defender and headed in Valeri’s corner kick. The goal stood after a brief replay review. It was Mabiala’s first in 20 regular-season games after signing with the Timbers midway through last season.
—Field Level Media