The Audi 2020 MLS Cup Playoffs started this weekend with drama, chaos, and complete absurdness. On Sunday, the trio of games rounded out with the Portland Timbers hosting FC Dallas in the first round of a win-or-go-home single elimination match, with the team from Frisco, Texas emerging victorious in a dramatic penalty kick shootout.
The Timbers had to battle without their star player Sebastian Blanco, who suffered a right ACL injury in September.
Throughout the first twenty minutes of the match, the Timbers controlled the game, being able to secure shots and string up a few good passing sequences.
Neither team really had a clear cut chance to take control of the game, as the teams headed into their respective dressing rooms with the score locked at 0-0.
Portland came out swinging, maintaining possession for about 25 minutes of the second half, attacking and controlling the run of play against Dallas. It seemed as though Portland would advance when defender Jorge Villafana put the Rose City in the lead in the 82nd minute of play.
It was a dream for the Timbers a they had to battle off a fighting FC Dallas team, scrambling for an equalizer. They eventually got the game-tying goal late in stoppage time, to force the match to go to 30-minutes of extra time.
You love to see it.— Ricardo Pepi (@Ricardo_Pepi9) November 23, 2020
Neither team could find a winner in regulation, making this match go to extra time. Diego Valeri came close when he was able to chip goalkeeper Jimmy Maurer, only to have the attempt glance off the far post in what would be the last action of extra time.
FC Dallas would claim victory after an enthralling penalty kick shootout, winning 8-7 from the spot.
Penalty kick clinic. 🎯 pic.twitter.com/4LWfFoTqSS— Major League Soccer (@MLS) November 23, 2020
Dallas will await the winner of the LAFC vs Seattle Sounders match.