Home frailty continues against Portland, 1:1
May 7, 2022
What is going on with this team? Its road perfect is almost matched by home ineptitude. In five home matches, Metro has failed to produced a win, this time settling for a 1:1 draw with Portland. As could have been worse, as Metro needed a second-half equalizer to rescue a point.
Gerhard Struber elected to start Dylan Nealis, pushing Lewis Morgan further up the field and sitting Omir Fernandez. Patryk Klimala had to miss the game due to the dreaded "health and safety protocols", meaning that your starter was... no, not Ashley Fletcher. Tom Barlow!
The first half was fairly even, with Metro's best chance coming off a Frankie Amaya free kick that Dylan Nealis met close to goal, only for his header to miss the net. Barlow had a solid chance as well, forcing a save on a one-time redirect. On the other end, Portland hit the crossbar, as the game entered the break scoreless.
The visitors broke through in the 53rd, when Jaroslaw Niezgoda redirected a cross at the near post past Carlos Coronel. The goal seemed to be a wake-up call for Metro, as "Big, Strong, Fast" Barlow won the ball in midfield, sprung Luquinhas, and then got back on the receiving end in the box, only to shoot wide.
Metro evened the game in the 67th off a Tom Edwards corner kick. Dylan Nealis headed the ball back across the penalty area, where Aaron Long slammed it into the net. Truly, the defender is Metro's best finisher.
Needing a goal to win, Struber took off Barlow for... no, not Fletcher. Zach Ryan! Alas, the rookie and the rest of the offense could not produce, as Metro's limited offensive forays were easily dealt with.
Well, at least the next game is on the road?
Lineup: Coronel, Tolkin, Long, Nealis, Edwards, Nealis, Amaya, Casseres, Morgan, Luquinhas, Barlow. Subs: Yearwood, Fernandez, Ryan.