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Tuesday, December 5, 2023
Dec. 5, 2023

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Kamara gives Chicago 2-1 victory over Timbers


PORTLAND — Kei Kamara scored the go-ahead goal in the 83rd minute to give the Chicago Fire a 2-1 victory over the Portland Timbers on Wednesday night.

It was Kamara’s 144th career goal, moving him within a goal of Landon Donovan (145) for second on Major League Soccer’s career scoring list. Chris Wondolowski is the league’s all-time leader with 171 goals.

The win snapped a three-game losing streak in all competitions for the Fire. It was Chicago’s first victory over the Timbers after five losses and five draws. The last meeting was in 2019, a 3-2 Timbers’ victory in Portland.

“It’s been a tough run, but for us to get a big win like this on the road, really, it’s good for us,” Kamara said.

Chicago took an early lead on Fabian Herbers’ goal in the eighth minute. Hebers scored on a late run into the box off a cross by Brian Gutiérrez.

Franck Boli scored for the Timbers in the 26th minute to pull into a tie.

Kamara came in as a substitute in the 69th minute for striker Kacper Przybyłko.

“I enjoy this, enjoy scoring goals. I can’t say I don’t,” Kamara said. “But when you can score goals like this, like this one tonight, that’s a huge one, to get the team all three points on the road in a place like Portland. To me, that’s what matters.”

Chicago (4-6-8) was coming off a disheartening 2-1 loss to Columbus last weekend. The Crew won it on a half-field strike by Lucas Zelarayan in stoppage time after Chicago’s Xherdan Shaqiri scored the equalizer in the 88th minute. Shaqiri did not play against the Timbers because of international duty.

Portland’s last game ended in a 0-0 draw with the Earthquakes in San Jose last weekend. The Timbers (5-8-6) have just one victory in their previous six matches.

“Fans should be disappointed,” Timbers coach Giovanni Savarese said. “Even though we put in the work and the effort, we didn’t capitalize on our opportunities. We fell asleep on their game-winner.”

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