Timbers top Whitecaps to spoil BC Place opener

TimbersWin (Getty)

By DAVID GUBALA

The inaugural Major League Soccer game at the newly renovated BC Place wasn't necessarily a one to remember for the Vancouver Whitecaps.

The Portland Timbers managed to spoil Vancouver's stadium opening with a 1-0 upset thanks to a cracker of a goal from Kenny Cooper on Sunday afternoon.

The victory moved the Timbers into a tie for the 10th and final MLS playoff spot with the New York Red Bulls, who currently hold the tie-breaker on Portland for the spot.

A giveaway ball from Vancouver's Alain Rochat in the 25th minute gifted the TImbers' game-winning goal. Diego Chara intercepted the pass and put his counter-attacking speed to good use. Chara then crossed the ball to a wide-open Kenny Cooper who took a touch and volleyed it beautifully over Joe Cannon.

Kenny Cooper tallied his seventh goal of 2011, earning the Timbers only their second road win of the season.

Vancouver had a great opportunity to get on the scoreboard in the 22nd minute when Pete Vegenas headed a crossed ball back to set up a streaking Shea Salinas for a shot. Salinas failed to capitalize on the opportunity and shot his effort wide of the post.

The Whitecaps' most notable chance, however, came in the 34th minute. Eric Hassli flicked a nifty backheel back to Davide Chumiento just outside the box, but his low-driven effort unfortunately hit the side netting.

The second half proved to be a pretty back and forth one for both sides, however the score stood still for the remainder of the game.

It was a memorable night for the 21,000 fans in attendance, particularly for the traveling Timbers supporters.

The Timbers (11-13-7) host the Houston Dynamo at JELD-WEN Field on Oct. 14. It's a comfortable position the Timbers find themselves in as they just miss out on earning the 10th spot based on their goal differential stat.

The Vancouver Whitecaps (4-16-10) are already mathematically out of earning a playoff spot, however they host Real Salt Lake on Thursday at BC Place.

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17 Responses to Timbers top Whitecaps to spoil BC Place opener

  1. Kejsare says:

    Perkins with his 9th shutout of the season, a career high.
    Cooper now tied with Jewsbury for most goals on the team. A place we all thought he’d be in all season.
    Doing well, and at a minimum need 4 more points in the next three games depending on the rest of the field. Really helpful would be to win two of the last three.

  2. Bakasama says:

    How is beating the team at the bottom of the table an upset?

  3. abc says:

    Why would they open BC Place this year, in a season when they already rode the excitement from a new MLS expansion team and the new (Empire) stadium?
    The have an lousy record, this late in the season they are done, so there is little to no reason for fan excitement. They should have made some new signings and started next season fresh at BC Place.

    Awful awful decision… so no surprise that the Vancouver Whitecaps made it.

  4. Fredy says:

    Bragging rights behind SSFC

  5. Chris says:

    The Whitecaps are going to have to get a whole new group of defenders next year. They have some talented strikers like Hassli, Chuimiento and Camilo Sanvezzo, but the defense is brutal. They badly need to find a top flight young goaltender. Who would have thought that the likes of Rochat and DeMerit would be so disappointing?

  6. Second City says:

    “opening with a 1-0 upset thanks to a cracker of a goal from Kenny Cooper on Sunday afternoon.”

    really? cracker of a goal? really….?

  7. hendrix says:

    Go watch the highlights. It was a “cracker” of a goal. Great volley in the far corner of the net.

  8. TFCfan says:

    That drop down roof looks really cheap. They should just tarp the seats. Vancouver’s first season has been a complete fail.

  9. Boy, I says:

    DeMerit plays with no urgency. I don’t get it either.

  10. Boy, I says:

    Yeah, it was a pretty sick one, especially when compared to Cooper’s other goals, which have mostly been a combination of luck and ugliness.

  11. Boy, I says:

    I disagree. I think the false roof looks great. It draws the attention away from the thousands of empty upper deck seats. BC Place is cool because it’s completely different from any other stadium in MLS.

  12. ChiTownFire says:

    I agree, I thought I was the only one who thought that. It should be one whole piece instead of separate pieces, like it shows on FIFA 12. That would look so much better.

  13. PDX says:

    Yep, it was a nice goal. You may want to check it out.

  14. 99 says:

    “like it shows on FIFA 12…” and all the renderings that I’ve previously seen. The roof/ceiling looked really cheap. Did they really need that big of a tv in the middle of the field? Seems like some of that dough could have gone filling in those gaps.

    i have to say, on TV, Empire was a TON more visually appealling then BC Place. It reminded me of a cheaper version of the Metrodome- lighting and all.

  15. bryan says:

    yeah, idk if i like it either. looks silly to me. but a bunch of empty seats would look silly too. so it’s a lose-lose situation.

  16. bryan says:

    how is not? that goal was sick.

  17. DCLee says:

    Congrats to Vancouver on their new digs!