Wrapping up the Red Bulls' draw with the Portland Timbers.
March 3, 2012: Timbers 3, Red Bulls 3
You can call it an instant classic, as MLSsoccer.com seems to imply, but if you're going to call it anything, "a bit of a mess" seems more apt.
Yes, history repeated itself in a wild (but relatively controversy-free) game between the Portland Timbers and the Red Bulls, but it wasn't a comeback that made it so. It was defensive lapses and a lack of conditioning that did.
It seemed both teams were trying to figure themselves out as much as they were their opponent.
Take Fabian Espindola's first goal: Mikael Silvestre plays a back pass to goalkeeper Donovan Ricketts, who mishandles the ball, leaving it for Espindola to knock home. Some are laying the blame at Silvestre's feet (har har). But really, Ricketts could've simply picked the ball up.
All in all, it's not an awful result. But there was more bad than good -- seriously, look at the position stats -- but the good will come with time.
"We didn't prepare it the way - not our fault, obviously - the way you should prepare a game. But that's the way the league is, and you have to come here and perform. We did match Portland for an hour; but then in the last 30 minutes they took over, and we ran out of steam. They took control of the game and scored two.
"What is frustrating is the way we came here. We didn't prepare anything because we were at the airport on Friday, on Saturday, too, trying to come here. We did eventually; but we didn't prepare the game how we should've prepared the game. And you could see the last 30 minutes: Everyone ran out of steam."
"I just think that we possibly came out with the mindset that we should save the lead instead of keep doing what we were doing in the first half," Petke said. "That falls on the coaching staff first and foremost. Maybe we should have made it clearer.
"At the end of the day they battled, and there are guys in that locker room that are crushed right now. To see that type of attitude and that sort of letdown after scoring three goals on the road and getting a point on the road, which in MLS is very difficult to do, it's great to see them pissed off."