Metro stays alive, tops Portland 2:0
September 24, 2011
The words "must win" get thrown around a lot, as they did the last few weeks with Metro. Yet, other than the surprising result in Dallas a week ago, these "must wins" turned into ties and losses, and Metro's grip on a playoff berth, earlier this season a supposed formality, became no better than a 50-50 proposition. So tonight, a real "must win", a game where a tie would have been disastrous... and Metro actually won, topping Portland 2:0 as Dane Richards led the way with a brilliant performance.
The only changes from the mid-week debacle were on defense, as Carlos Mendes stepped in at left back for the injured Chris Albright, and Stephen Keel started in central defense for suspended douchebag Rafa Marquez.
Portland had most of the ball early in the match, but the defense held, and slowly but surely, Metro started to take over the play. In the 21st minute, Joel Lindpere got the ball to Richards in the penalty area, and the blazing Jamaican toed the endline, walking closer and closer to the net, finishing off from a tough angle. Metro had the lead... and that was all they needed.
For the defense held strong. There was one dangerous sequence early in the second half, when Portland rang a shot and its rebound off the crossbar, but other than that, the shutout was a formality. It is also important to note that Metro's last four shutouts have all happened with douchebag Marquez not playing, something that should not be considered coincidental.
Metro had their share of chances to double the lead, with more fancy Richards footwork giving Portland fits all night. Lindpere, also on top of his game, had a long blast just tipped by Troy Perkins.
The second goal came in the 66th minute after a Metro corner kick. Kalif Alhassan handled the ball on the line, and Luke Rodgers buried the ensuing penalty kick to make the result all but a formality.
So, four games left. Is the next game a "must win"? They better treat it as such.
Lineup: Rost, Mendes, Ream, Keel, Solli, Tainio, McCarty, Lindpere, Richards, Rodgers, Henry. Subs: Agudelo, Auvray, Ballouchy.