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FC St. Pauli were beaten 4-2 on penalties in the friendly against Portland Timbers 2 on Tuesday. Sami Allagui and Dimitrios Diamantakos had fired the Boys in Brown into a two-goal lead, but Augustine Williams restored parity for the home side with a late brace. In a heated final few minutes, Ersin Zehir and Timbers defender Arturo Diz Pe were sent off following a scuffle.

The Boys in Brown made a copybook start to the second friendly of their US tour. Less than five minutes had been played when Daniel Buballa laid the ball off for Sami Allagui, who wasted no time in curling an unstoppable shot into the far corner from the inside-left channel.

Yet it was the home side who had the better of the exchanges after that. Robin Himmelmann just managed to scramble a mishit backpass off the line on 13, and two minutes later the keeper produced a fine save to deny Dairon Asprilla. The Timbers striker was soon in the thick of things again, and the Boys in Brown had the crossbar to thank for keeping out his 25th minute header.

In this phase of the game Markus Kauczinski's team were content to sit back and wait for an opportunity to break, a strategy that almost came off in the 29th minute when Allagui found Marcell Sobotta, whose shot was blocked in the penalty area. Two minutes before the interval Himmelmann was on his toes again to save from Lawrence Olum, ensuring the Boys in Brown went in at the half slightly fortunate to be in front.

As is customary for friendly matches, both coaches rang the changes at half-time. Timbers boss Cameron Knowles made eight changes, while Kauczinski introduced five new players in Philipp Heerwagen, Brian Koglin, Lasse Sobiech, Ersin Zehir and Jan-Marc Schneider.

In the 50th minute Dimitrios Diamantakos demonstrated his ability in an unfamiliar area, clearing the ball off the line in the manner of a sweeper with Philipp Heerwagen beaten. Just after the hour, the 5,000 spectators at Providence Park came close to seeing a candidate for goal of the season when Daniel Buballa caught out Timbers custodian Austin Pack with an effort from inside his own half, only to see his effort come back off the right-hand post.

Just three minutes later, however, Diamantakos produced a sober example of the striker's craft to double the advantage for an efficient St. Pauli side. Jan-Marc Schneider broke down the left and whipped a cross into the box, leaving Dimi the simple task of slotting the ball home at the back stick.

At this point the fans could have been forgiven for thinking the game was over as a contest, but that was far from being the case. Instead, the closing stages had it in them. With 17 minutes left, Augustine Williams halved the deficit when he headed home a corner. And with the Boys in Brown starting to feel the effects of all the travelling in the last few days, the home side stepped up another gear. Eventually, on 81 minutes, Williams found the net again, winning possession in the right before leaving Heerwagen no chance with a crisp drive.

After the equaliser the game lost its friendly character temporarily with a string of niggling and more serious fouls. Arturo Diz Pe and Ersin Zehir got involved in a scuffle and were shown the red card. Soon after the referee blew for full-time.

Tempers soon subsided, however, and the game went into a penalty shootout as agreed by both sides in the event of it finishing all square after 90 minutes, from which Portland Timbers 2 emerged victorious by four goals to two.

"It was a lively game shaped by a few niggling fouls towards the end," said Kauczinski after the final friendly of the 2018/19 season. "We were 2-0 up but then surrendered the advantage and so a 2-2 draw is OK. All in all, we gave it all we had again, but the lads were simply out on their feet at the end because of all the travelling."


Portland Timbers 2

Pack, Olum (Loria 46'), Tuiloma (Hanson 46'), Jadama (Diz Pe 46'), Farfan (Philips 46'), Mulligan (Vytas 46'), Flores (Edun 30'), Arboleda (Langsdorf 46'), Guzman (Lewis 61'), Asprilla (Williams 46'), Williamson (Zambrano 46')

Head coach: Cameron Knowles


FC St. Pauli

Himmelmann (Heerwagen 46') – Zander (Zehir 46'), Avevor (Sobiech 46'), Ziereis (Koglin 46'), Buballa – Neudecker, Lee, Sobota, Sobotta – Allagui (Schneider 46'), Diamantakos

Head coach: Markus Kauczinski


Goals: 0-1 Allagui (5'), 0-2 Diamantakos (64'), 1-2 Williams (73'), 2-2 Williams (81')

Penalty shootout: 4-2

Red cards: Diz Pe and Zehir (violent conduct 87')


Photos: FC St. Pauli