Earthquakes never say tie in 1-0 shutout over Real Salt Lake

Photo credit: @SJEarthquakes

By: Ana Kieu

The San Jose Earthquakes had looked to bounce back at home with a win over Real Salt Lake on Saturday night. The Quakes celebrated Japantown Neighborhood Night presented by Wells Fargo.

The Quakes’ starting lineup featured Daniel Vega, Marcus Lopez, Florian Jungwirth, Guram Kashia, Tommy Thompson, Judson, Jackson Yueill, Cristian Espinoza, Magnus Eriksson, Vako, and Chris Wondolowski.

Photo credit: @SJEarthquakes

San Jose was off to a great start, thanks to early chances from the get-go. The Quakes looked positive and were assertive in the possession department. Moreover, Cristian Espinoza’s meg in the 10th minute justified that he was having a home field day.

Judson made a notable kick in the 41st minute. However, the Brazilian midfielder’s kick was blocked by Real Salt Lake goalkeeper Nick Rimando.

San Jose and Real Salt Lake played to a scoreless tie at the end of the first half. Shots were even at six apiece. Moreover, the Quakes dominated in possession, passes, and pass accuracy.

Florian Jungwirth blocked a shot in the 52nd minute. Also, Daniel Vega came in clutch with a few noteworthy saves of his own, like the one in the 54th minute.

San Jose’s first substitution occurred in the 66th minute. Shea Salinas entered the match for Marcus Lopez.

San Jose’s second substitution occurred in the 71st minute. Paul Marie entered the match for Tommy Thompson.

San Jose’s third and final substitution occurred in the 74th minute. Danny Hoesen entered the match for Judson.

San Jose put up offensive signals in the final minutes of the match by knocking on the door in the 80th minute, having Vako take down a Real Salt Lake defender in the 85th minute, and most importantly, Danny Hoesen scoring the game-winning goal in the 93rd minute. The Quakes won 1-0.

Fans in attendance also won with a free Jumbo Jack with a large drink purchase at Jack in the Box. Jack in the Box offers some of the most unhealthy items among fast food restaurants, but hey, you can’t turn down free food. Plus it’s pretty cool to see Jack in a Quakes uniform and juggling a soccer ball with his knees.

The Quakes head to Dignity Health Tennis Center to take on the LA Galaxy on Saturday, July 12 at 8:00 pm.

Minnesota United ends Earthquakes’ unbeaten streak with 3-1 win

Photo credit: @MNUFC

By Pearl Allison Lo

The San Jose Earthquakes’ six-game streak was serious, but Minnesota United FC–also known as the Loons–showed their game before was not a fluke, halting the Earthquakes with a 3-1 win at Allianz Field Wednesday.

With just a point separating them in the standings, Minnesota leapfrogged San Jose after the result. The last time the two teams met it was during the infancy of the 2019 season. Minnesota won 3-0 and it was the Quakes’ second straight loss and first shutout of the season and would be followed by three more losses.

Minnesota whooped FC Cincinnati their last game 7-1, and even though FC Cincinnati was in last place, they proved their play with their performance versus rising San Jose. In both this and their last game, Minnesota’s possession percentage hovered in the 30s.

Goalie Vito Mannone excelled for his team, making a MLS career-high seven saves, especially in the second half, as the Quakes attempted to come from behind. San Jose had 27 to Minnesota’s 13 shots and 10 shots blocked.

Michael Boxall had the game-winner in the 52nd minute. An inadvertent kick forward by San Jose helped and before goalie Daniel Vega could get to the ball, Boxall capitalized to put Minnesota back up.

The Quakes fell behind for just the second time in 12 games, early in the 5th minute. Darwin Quintero was aided by Ethan Finlay and Miguel Ibarra.

Things got heated in the end of the first half. San Jose’s Vako bled, both teams jawed at each other and the Quakes’ Tommy Thompson got knocked down. Thompson ended up scoring his second goal in as many games with either his hip or stomach in the 47th minute in stoppage time as a result.

As Thompson put it, “We have a couple different set pieces that we work on; Magnus [Eriksson] and Cristian [Espinoza] can both whip a great ball in. We get a lot of guys in the box for a reason and I’m glad it payed off on that play.”

San Jose ended up with 65% possession throughout the game. Minnesota received four of five yellow cards in the second half. The Quakes’ Magnus Eriksson had a game-high six shots.

Eriksson replied, “Nothing to be ashamed of. We controlled the whole second half and we are proud of the way we executed this game…”

Teammate Shea Salinas made his presence known after entering in the 66th minute. He had two assists on shots Mannone was forced to save, to Danny Hoesen in the 68th minute and Eriksson in the 71st minute.

Thompson’s shot in the 88th minute went over the bar.

Minnesota wasn’t done yet though. Former Quake Ike Opara had the primary assist as he won the ball against Minnesotan Jackson Yueill and sent it to Kevin Molino from the midfield Molino who entered in the 83rd minute, scored in the 92nd minute and got a yellow card the minute after. Molino also had the last goal of the last match, which came in the 87th minute and he was the only repeat scorer for Minnesota between their last two games.

San Jose still had life when Cristian Espinoza was pulled down, but his subsequent attempt was saved as well.

Up Next: The Quakes will have an even quicker turnaround for their next game, as they return home for one game to host Real Salt Lake Saturday at 7:30 pm.

Headline Sports podcast with London Marq: Cousins may leave Golden State, but can he fit in with Lakers?; US Women’s Soccer team could win it all this Sunday; plus more

Photo credit: @LakeShowWorld

On Headline Sports with London:

#1 Critics says that there is no market for DeMarcus Cousins. What would you say the reason are as someone who covered him while he was at Golden State? Too many injuries, didn’t fulfill what the Warriors expected out him, too much baggage.

#2 Would the Lakers consider picking up Cousins? Cousins is reportedly watching if Kawhi Leonard decides to sign with the Lakers and if so would Cousins want to join Leonard in the Southland?

#3 You were there, how impressive were the Earthquakes when they shutout the LA Galaxy 3-0 at Stanford Stadium last Saturday?

#4 Quakes head coach Matias Almeyda said the game was a spectacle and the team is on the right path and has improved.

#5 The US Women’s team got a 2-1 win over England to advance to the Finals, which will be played on Sunday. Talk about how nervous you are for this upcoming match that could win it all.

London Marq does Headline Sports for http://www.sportsradioservice.com each Wednesday

San Jose Earthquakes podcast with Ana Kieu: Quakes blowout Galaxy in Cali Clasico; Quakes to take on Minnesota United; plus more

Photo credit: @SJEarthquakes

On the San Jose Earthquakes podcast with Ana:

1. The Quakes blowout the LA Galaxy 3-0 in the Cali Clasico for their second straight win.

2. The Quakes take on the Minnesota United at Allianz Field Wednesday.

3. After that, San Jose will return to Avaya Stadium to host Real Salt Lake Saturday night.

4. Vako, Tommy Thompson and Matias Almeyda were all part of the MLS Team of the Week for Week 17.

5. Vako was named MLS Player of the Week for Week 17.

Catch Ana on the San Jose Earthquakes podcasts each week at http://www.sportsradioservice.com

The California Clasíco

By London Marq

STANFORD, Calif. – The San Jose Earthquakes and Los Angeles Galaxy are two of the original ten clubs that Major League Soccer debuted with, in 1996. The league has since bloomed and now has twenty-four teams. Separated by nearly 400 miles the Earthquakes and Galaxy continue to have one of the hottest rivalries in the league.

Known as The California Clasíco, the rivalry spans the entire 23-year history of Major League Soccer and has seen game 57 games between the regular season and the playoffs. Not only is this a geographical rivalry, but it is also marked by games that will never be forgotten. During the 2003 playoffs, San Jose scored 5 goals in a single match after being down 4-nil (on aggregate) to win the game and the series. It is one of the greatest games in MLS History and is the greatest comeback. The rivalry has exemplified the best of soccer in the United States, featuring some of the all-time greats from the U.S. such as Landon Donovan and Chris Wondolowski.

MLS soccer needs more rivalries like the California Clasíco. The league continues to expand year by year and MLS had the 3rd highest average attendance among the major sports leagues in the U.S. in 2018. Still, they struggle to gain the respect commanded by other sports. The lack of a lucrative and primetime television contract holds MLS from its true potential. But with the World Cup being hosted by the United States in 2026, it is likely that soccer will continue to grow as a priority in the American sports realm.

On June 29th, the Galaxy and Earthquakes went toe-to-toe once more at Stanford University in front of a sellout crowd of over 50,000 people. In 2017, Atlanta United set the MLS record for attendance with a crowd of nearly 75,000. With more expansion in the future for MLS, the league will continue to gain notoriety. But in order to thrive, MLS needs to invigorate rivalries between clubs that players and fans alike can invest in. Casual fans want to believe that soccer holds more weight than a 1-1 draw. They want to see exciting goals and enthralling storylines. MLS needs to take a long look at how they market themselves. An examination of the long history of the California Clasíco would be a great place to start.

Earthquakes dominate Galaxy in 3-0 Clasíco victory

by Marko Ukalovic and London Marq

STANFORD, Calif- The San Jose Earthquakes put on a show in front of a record setting crowd in defeating the Los Angeles Galaxy 3-0 in the first round of the annual California Classico on Saturday evening at Stanford Stadium.

With the win, San Jose is currently on a six game unbeaten streak (5-0-1) and for the moment jumped ahead of Minnesota FC and the Houson Dynamo for fifth place in the Western Conference with 25 points. Los Angeles is still in second place with 31 points.

It didn’t take long for San Jose (7-6-5) to draw first blood and send the 50,850 in attendance, the most to ever attend a Classico game, into a frenzy. In the 11th minute, Jackson Yueill’s free kick from 30 yards out found Magnus Eriksson. He fed a pass over to Vako who took one dribble to the right and fired a shot past Galaxy goalkeeper (and former Quake) David Bingham into the far left corner for his fourth goal of the season and third in the past two games.

The Quakes controlled the play from the beginning and all the way up to the end of the first half despite the possession being even at 50%. They had six shots on goal compared to only two for the Galaxy.

“It was a great spectacle”, said Quakes head coach Matias Almeyda, coaching in his first Cali Classico. “It’s always important to win. We know we have to keep on this path. We have improved and we should keep on improving.”

Los Angeles (10-7-1) was finally able to get a couple of scoring chances near the end of the first 45 minutes.  Dave Romney’s shot from 10 yards out was saved by Quakes goalkeeper Daniel Vega in the 38th minute. Galaxy leading goal scorer Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s header off a set piece from 6 yards out was also thrawted away by Vega.

“We had a few good chances”, said Galaxy midfielder Perry Kitchen. “But the broke us on the counter twice.”

The Quakes back line did well to collapse in the middle of the box to keep Ibrahimovic and the rest of the Galaxy’s offense from creating quality chances.

San Jose put the game away in the 83rd minute as Vako led a counter attack. He crossed the ball going from left to right over to Shea Salians, who entered as a substitute in the 75th minute, and he rifled a shot into the upper left corner to beat Bingham for his fifth goal of the season.

“I’ve just been blessed to be put in good situations in this game”, said Salians who played his first game back from an injury. “It’s always fun to play well and score in front of 50,000 people.  I think we could’ve scored more goals. It was a good game for us.”

San Jose added on another goal just two minutes later in the 85th minute when Tommy Thompson carried the ball in from the right slot, dribbled around a Galaxy defender and then fired a shot that deflected off a Galaxy defender into the back of the net for an own goal that gave the Quakes a commanding 3-0 lead.

“I told him (Almeyda) ‘quiero esta en la concha’ I want to be on the field”, said Thompson regarding how he has been able to adapt to switching to play as a defender. “If one of the best coaches in the world says you can play this position, in your mind you gotta think I can play this position as well. It’s been new for me but it’s been a special year for me as well.”

Vega was huge in the net stopping all five shots on goal for his second consecutive shutout in just three days.

GAME NOTES: Los Angeles midfielder Flavio Alvarez was issued a yellow card in the 67th minute for an illegal tackle attempt.

Salians was isssued a yellow card for taking off his jersey in his post goal celebration.

Since 2003 San Jose is now 13-8-3 at home versus Los Angeles.

UP NEXT: The Quakes take on Minnesota FC on Wednesday 7/3 at 5:00pm at Allianz Field.

San Jose Earthquakes podcast with Ana Kieu: Quakes shutout Dynamo 2-0, Quakes prep for Cali Clasico; plus more

Photo credit: @SJEarthquakes

On the San Jose Earthquakes podcast with Ana:

1. The Quakes shutout the Houston Dynamo 2-0 at Avaya Stadium Wednesday to earn three points.

2. With the win, San Jose soared in the current MLS Western Conference standings.

3. The Quakes recently signed Mexican winger Carlos Fierro pending his P-1 visa.

4. The Quakes prepare for the Cali Clasico against the LA Galaxy at Stanford Stadium on Saturday, June 29.

5. The US men’s soccer team shutout Panama 1-0 in the Group D decider Wednesday.

Ana does the San Jose Earthquakes podcasts each week at http://www.sportsradioservice.com

Vako’s brace powers Earthquakes over Dynamo 2-0

Photo credit: @SJEarthquakes

By Marko Ukalovic

SAN JOSE, Calif. — In a game that was dominated from start to finish, led by Georgian striker Vako, the San Jose Earthquakes defeated the Houston Dynamo with a convincing 2-0 win on Wednesday evening at Avaya Stadium.

Vako put on a clinic out on the pitch for San Jose, whose unbeaten streak was extended to five games (4-0-1), scoring twice and had opportunities to score more than two as Houston had no answer in trying to stop him.

San Jose continued their transformation since starting the season 0-4 and have jumped to sixth place in the Western Conference that even has surprised head coach Matias Almeyda.

“I knew it was going to take a while,” said Almeyda. “I even thought it would take a little bit longer. The start was completely negative. But it’s day to day and we have to keep insisting on improving. This is one of the team’s that has the lowest payroll in the league and watching them compete at this level makes me proud.”

The Quakes (6-6-4) drew first blood halfway through the first half. Magnus Eriksson centered a pass that split two Dynamo defenders from along the right side of the goal-line to an unmarked Vako, who one-timed a chip shot past Houston goalkeeper Joe Willis for his first goal of the game and second goal of the season in the 22nd minute.

The Quakes controlled the tempo and play in the first half as they kept the Dynamo on their heels with the majority of the possession (61%-39%) being played in the Houston’s defensive zone in the opening 45 minutes.

“Really growing that belief,” said Wondo. “It’s a funny thing, confidence. We’ve bought into Matias’ game plan and when you execute it in the right way it’s very effective. It’s a lot of fun.”

In the second half, San Jose kept the pedal to the metal as they dominated play and were constantly in Houston’s end of the pitch getting six quality scoring chances in the first 20 minutes.

When Vako wasn’t scoring, he was setting up his teammates, including captain Chris Wondolowski. Vako centered a pass over to a wide-open Wondo, who was robbed from six yards out by Willis’ great two-handed save to keep the ball out of the net.

“It would’ve been very easy for him to just throw in town,” said Wondo regarding the play of Vako, who had struggled earlier on in the season. “But he’s (done) the opposite. As you saw tonight, he’s a very great player.”

Jackson Yueill led a three-on-one attack after stripping the ball off a Houston defender from 30 yards out, but his shot sailed wide of the mark in the 69th minute.

Houston (7-5-3) could not muster much of a counter attack against San Jose. An errant pass here, a turnover there was the story of the night for the fifth place Dynamo. Their poor offensive play was the catalyst for the quick counters by the Quakes that led to their numerous scoring chances.

San Jose doubled their lead in the 75th minute when Vako scored his second tally of the evening and third goal of the season when collected a rebound inside the box, dribbled five yard into the middle and rifled a shot past Willis to put the home team comfortably ahead.

“I’m just trying to stay focus and keep going,” said Vako. “I’m just happy I had some chances and I used it.”

GAME NOTES: Quakes defender Anibal Godoy underwent surgery on Tuesday to remove scar tissue from his abdomen that was impairing his bilateral nerves. He is expected to be sidelined for six weeks.

Quakes forward Danny Hoesen missed the game with an upper thigh injury.

Defenders Nick Lima (USA) and Harold Cummings (Panama) were away on international duty for their respective countries participating in the CONCACAF Gold Cup.

Houston’s Ronaldo Pena received a yellow card in the 17th minute for displaying unsportsmanlike conduct. AJ Delagarza Jr. also received a yellow card in the 57th minute on a low tackle attempt.

San Jose leads the overall series 7-4-2.

UP NEXT: The Quakes host the Los Angeles Galaxy on Saturday, June 29 in the annual California Clasico at Stanford Stadium at 6:30 pm.

Headline Sports podcast with London Marq: Trump says Rapinoe’s protest is inappropriate; War of words starting to brew between Trump and Rapinoe over protests; plus more

photo from time.com: Megan Rapinoe #15 of USA (center) and her teammates are standing for the national anthem during the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup France Group F match between USA and Chile at Parc des Princes on June 16, 2019 in Paris, France.

On the Headline Sports podcast with London:

#1 The war of tweets and words has initially begun at the US World Women’s soccer matches between President Trump and US Women’s soccer star Megan Rapinoe. Rapinoe originally took a knee during national anthems during the 2016 games. Now she stands without putting her hand over her heart unlike the rest of the teammates. Rapinoe said she will not visit the White House if the US team wins the championship. Trump says by her not doing it, Rapinoe is inappropriate and said she should win first before she talks.

#2 Rapinoe said that the reason she is protesting is because of unjustified treatment by police and law enforcement officials towards minorities and people of color. Rapinoe told American Soccer Now, “Being a gay American, I know what it means to look at the flag and not have it protect all of your liberties.” With the World Cup going on, this will most likely not be the last of the stand off between Trump and Rapinoe.

#3 We asked London about the World Cup putting up signs on the scoreboard indicating that there will game delays for replay reviews. This lends to fans following the games and thinking that their team has the game in hand, but they’ll wait until a replay review has been called for.

#4 After going five straight games without a loss the San Jose Earthquakes lost to LAFC who took it to the Quakes with a 3-1 win in Los Angeles last week on Thursday. For LA, Adama Diomande scored twice, which led LAFC to the two-goal win.

#5 The Quakes continue their road trip tonight against Houston at Avaya Stadium in San Jose as they face the Dynamo. The Dynamo are in fifth place in the MLS West at 7-3-4. The Dynamo are 2-1-3 in their last six games and have lost their last two games to Minnesota and Portland.

London Marq covers the San Jose Earthquakes and does Headline Sports podcasting each week at http://www.sportsradioservice.com

San Jose Earthquakes podcast with Ana Kieu: Here’s your weekly dose of Quakes news

Photo credit: @SJEarthquakes

On the San Jose Earthquakes podcast with Ana:

1. The Quakes partnered with Telemundo 48 to air three matches in Spanish during the 2019 season.

2. Quakes to host eighth annual Wine and Dine event on August 25th.

3. Nick Lima and the US men’s soccer team got their first Gold Cup win Tuesday, a 4-0 shutout of Guyana.

4. Quakes Academy midfielder Sophie Jones was named Gatorade National Girls Soccer Player of the Year.

5. The Quakes faced LAFC in Los Angeles on Thursday in the US Open Cup’s Round of 16.

Ana does the San Jose Earthquakes podcasts each week for SportsRadioService.com