New York Plays to Wild 3-3 Tie at Portland in MLS Season Opener

PORTLAND, OR (March 3, 2013) – Behind a two-goal performance from forward Fabian Espindola, the New York Red Bulls earned a point in a wild 3-3 tie against the Portland Timbers at a sold out JELD-WEN Field Sunday in the MLS season opener for both teams. Jamison Olave also scored for New York, which are now 0-0-1 with one point following Mike Petke’s head coaching debut.

New York took the lead in the ninth minute. Juninho played the ball into the box and Timbers defender Mikael Silvestre tried to back pass it to Ricketts, who could not control it. Espindola was there to knock the loose ball into the empty net.

Portland tied the game right back up five minutes later. Kalif Alhassan chipped it to Diego Valeri, who controlled it in the box and slid it past a diving Luis Robles.

Espindola tallied his second of the game and made the score 2-1 in the 24th minute. New York’s Kosuke Kimura had the ball on the right side and played it down the channel. Espindola was able to run onto it, drove into the box and found the goal’s lower left corner with his shot.

New York piled on the pressure and the Red Bulls doubled their advantage four minutes after Espindola’s second. Following a cleared New York corner kick, Ruben Bover passed it to Heath Pearce on the left wing and the Red Bulls defender drove a cross into the six-yard box, where it was deflected in by a fully extended Olave.

In a seesaw battle, Portland pulled it back to within one 11 minutes into the second half. Valeri had space outside the box and his attempt on target was parried by Robles. Darlington Nagbe was first to the rebound and hit it home to make it 3-2. 

The hosts tied the match with seven minutes left in the encounter. Jose Adolfo Valencia was able to control the ball in the right side of the penalty box following a Robles save and centered in a cross in that ricocheted off Olave and into his own net.

The Red Bulls return to the field on Sunday, March 10 when they visit the San Jose Earthquakes at Buck Shaw Stadium at 10:00 PM ET (TV: ESPN2; Radio: ESPN Deportes Radio Nueva York 1050 AM). New York’s home opener is on Saturday, March 16 at 12:30 PM as it battles D.C. United at Red Bull Arena. For tickets, call 1.877.RBSOCCER or log onto www.newyorkredbulls.com.

New York Red Bulls 3, Portland Timbers 3
March 3, 2013 – JELD-WEN Field – Portland, OR
MLS Regular Season

Scoring Summary:
NY: Fabian Espindola 1 (unassisted) 9’
POR: Diego Valeri 1 (Kalif Alhassan 1, Will Johnson 1) 14’
NY: Fabian Espindola 2 (Kosuke Kimura 1) 24’
NY: Jamison Olave 1 (Heath Pearce 1, Ruben Bover 1) 28’
POR: Darlington Nagbe 1 (unassisted) 56’
POR: Jamison Olave (own goal) 83’

Disciplinary Summary:

New York Red Bulls (0-0-1, 1 point) – Luis Robles, Kosuke Kimura (Eric Alexander 93’+), Jamison Olave, Heath Pearce, Roy Miller, Juninho, Dax McCarty, Ruben Bover (Jonny Steele 66’), Tim Cahill, Fabian Espindola (Brandon Barklage 73’), Thierry Henry

Substitutes Not Used: Santiago Castano, Markus Holgersson, Josue Martinez, Connor Lade

Portland Timbers  (0-0-1, 0 points) – Donovan Ricketts, Mikael Silvestre, Andrew Jean-Baptiste, Ryan Miller (Sal Zizzo 72’), Michael Harrington, Diego Valeri, Diego Chara (Rodney Wallace 82’), Will Johnson, Ryan Johnson, Kalif Alhassan (Jose Adolfo Valencia 72’), Darlington Nagbe

Substitutes Not Used: Jake Gleeson, Ben Zemanski, Michael Nanchoff, Dylan Tucker-Gangnes 

Referee: Jair Marrufo
Referee’s Assistants: Frank Anderson, Adam Garner 
4th Referee: Fotis Bazakos
Attendance: 20,674 (sellout)