Timbers and Crew advance to MLS Cup final

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The Portland Timbers defeat FC Dallas and the Columbus Crew down the New York Red Bulls on aggregate wins to advance to the MLS Cup final

Timbers and Crew advance to MLS Cup final

SHOWS: DALLAS, TEXAS, UNITED STATES (NOVEMBER 29, 2015)(STILL PHOTOS-ORIGINALLY 4:3-MUTE)(USA TODAY SPORTS IMAGES-MUST COURTESY USA TODAY SPORTS IMAGES)

1. STILL PHOTO OF TIMBERS FENANDO ADI CELEBRATING AFTER SCORING GOAL IN 54TH MINUTE TO GIVE TIMBERS 1-0 LEAD

2. STILL PHOTO OF TIMBERS ADI CELEBRATING GOAL

3. STILL PHOTO OF TIMBERS DIEGO VALERI (8) MAXIMILIANO URRUTI CELEBRATING AFTER MATCH FINISHES 2-2 GIVING AGGREGATE WIN TO TIMBERS TO ADVANCE TO MLS CUP FINAL

4. STILL PHOTO OF TIMBERS TEAM CELEBRATING IN FRONT OF SIGN THAT SAYS ‘WESTERN CONFERENCE CHAMPIONS 15’

HARRISON, NEW YORK, UNITED STATES (NOVEMBER 29, 2015)(STILL PHOTOS-ORIGINALLY 4:3-MUTE)(USA TODAY SPORTS IMAGES-MUST COURTESY USA TODAY SPORTS IMAGES)

5. STILL PHOTO OF CREW’S TONI TCHANI TAKING SHOT DURING MATCH AGAINST NEW YORK RED BULLS

6. STILL PHOTO OF RED BULLS ANATOLE ABANG (#9) SCORING GOAL IN 2ND HALF INJURY TIME TO GIVE RED BULLS 1-0 LEAD

7. STILL PHOTO OF CREW PLAYERS CELEBRATING WITH RED BULLS PLAYERS BEHIND THEM AFTER MATCH ENDS AND CREW WIN ON 2-1 AGGREGATE TO ADVANCE TO MLS CUP

8. STILL PHOTO OF CREW PLAYERS CELEBRATING AFTER WIN

STORY: The Portland Timbers advanced to their first Major League Soccer Cup final after cruising to a 5-3 aggregate win over Dallas in the Western Conference final on Sunday (November 29), while Columbus Crew also reached the title game after holding off New York Red Bulls.

After winning the first leg 3-1 at home last weekend, Portland drew the second 2-2 in Dallas to reach their first Cup final in five seasons in the league.

The final will be played on Sunday at the home ground of Columbus, who had the better regular season record.

Dallas boasted a league-best 13 home wins at Toyota Stadium during the regular season but in Portland they were facing a team that had not lost on the road since the end of August.

After a scoreless first half, Dallas’ task got even tougher when Portland striker Adi scored in the 54th minute to stretch the Timbers’ advantage.

Needing to score at least three, Dallas responded with goals from Ryan Hollingshead in the 68th minute and Blas Perez five minutes later.

The home side pushed for a third to take the tie to extra time but could not find the breakthrough and instead Portland’s Lucas Melano put the final nail in the coffin with a goal five minutes into stoppage time.

In the Eastern Conference final, Columbus took a 2-0 lead into the second leg and held on against the Red Bulls until stoppage time when New York defender Anatole Bertrand Abang pulled a goal back.

The Red Bulls almost drew the tie level in the dying seconds but striker Bradley Wright-Phillips banged his header against the post.

Playoff Results

Eastern Conference

Second leg on Sunday November 29: New York Red Bulls v Columbus Crew 1-0 (halftime: 0-0)

First leg: Columbus Crew defeat New York Red Bulls 2-0.

Columbus Crew win 2-1 on aggregate.

Western Conference:

Second leg on Sunday, November 29: FC Dallas v Portland Timbers 2-2 (halftime: 0-0)

First leg: Portland Timbers defeat FC Dallas 3-1.

Portland Timbers win 5-3 on aggregate.

Tags : final, advance, crew, Timbers

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