Instant Analysis: Five takeaways from Quakes' Cali Clasico win over Galaxy

Instant Analysis: Five takeaways from Quakes' Cali Clasico win over Galaxy


The start to the Chris Leitch era in San Jose was darn near perfect. 

Chris Wondolowski scored in the 74th minute in a potential Goal of the Season moment to equalize the match at 1–1 and Shea Salinas, in true California Clasico fashion, scored the game-winning goal three minutes into extra time to give the Quakes the 2-1 win. The goal was assisted by Danny Hoesen. 

Here are five things you should know about the Earthquakes' win at Stanford Stadium.

— Wondolowski’s goal wasn’t just highlight reel worthy, it was also historic. It was the forward’s ninth in the Clasico series — surpassing Landon Donovan and Robbie Keane for the all-time lead. 

After a David Bingham save, the goalkeeper spotted open space and, ala John Elway going deep downfield over in Stanford back in the day, booted a volley in Wondolowski’s vicinity. Wondolowski fought off a defender, cut back inside the box, picked his spot and with his left foot, beat Clement Diop far post. It was a vintage Wondolowski and one of the finest in his career.  

If it wasn't Salinas' roof-raising goal in extra time, Wondolowski's goal would be the main headline of the match. 

— Both teams came into Saturday’s match at less than full strength — and it showed in the first half. There were plenty of holes in the midfield. That said, the Quakes arguably had the better of the play with the lone goal of the half coming off a dead ball cross that Jelle Van Damme volleyed beautifully into the net. 

San Jose produced zero shots on target in first half but were much more aggressive in the second half. 

— Call it risky, courageous or necessary, but one of the more interesting lineup choices by Leitch in his first MLS game as head coach was to start rookie Jackson Yueill. The start was the first of the UCLA product’s career. 

Yueill played 90 minutes and completed nearly 80 percent of his passes. 

— At this game last year, there was controversy around a derogatory term used throughout the match when the L.A. goal keeper put the ball back into play. In an effort not to have that incident repeated, the Quakes issued statements before the game urging fans to refrain and even had Wondolowski read a couple of lines denouncing that action before the start of the match over the stadium's PA system. 

It worked. The term was not used. And the only real cursing came from the supporter section that is always a little extra unneighborly when the Galaxy comes to town. 

— Those looking for another piece of the Galaxy won’t have to wait too long. The two teams will tango again on July 10 at Avaya Stadium in the quarterfinals of the U.S. Open Cup. And while the game won’t mean a thing in the MLS standings, any San Jose fan will take a win against their bitter rivals at any time. Chances are, there will still be plenty of adrenaline from Saturday's win.

Defensive lapses cost Quakes in first loss of new season


Defensive lapses cost Quakes in first loss of new season


Is Saturday's road effort a sign of things to come or a new team trying to gel?

After a 2017 campaign where the San Jose Earthquakes struggled on the road -- especially defensively -- the 2018 season did not start much better in a 3-2 loss to Sporting Kansas City. 

"Of course, I am disappointed to be leaving here without points," said Quakes head coach Mikael Stahre, "but especially because in the first half and then in the first 15 minutes of the second we played really well."

The teams went into the half tied but Sporting Kansas scored twice in the second half, both times taking advantage of San Jose's gift of enough space for KC to take advantage of.

Chris Wondolowski scored for the Quakes -- putting him 10 goals away from Landon Donovan in the MLS all-time race and all alone in second place on that list. 

"I wish we could have won," Wondolowski said. "but credit to our team and Magnus [Eriksson] for putting that ball in there. To finish it was pretty cool, but hopefully we will get a couple more wins."

After conceeding a penalty halfway through the second half, Valeri Qazaishvili equalized in minute 34, following up his own header attempt and cashing in for his second goal of the seaon. 

But that would be all San Jose could muster for the majority of the second half.

Graham Zusi scored in the 56th minute on a beauty of a shot. 

Felipe Gutierrez will be awarded with the game-winner after a left-footed bullet beat Andrew Tarbell.  

San Jose (1-1-0) is winless in its last four against Sporting.

"We came here with ambition to win the game, or second best to leave with a point," Stahre said. "We fought until the end and it was really important for us to score the second goal, but I felt at halftime that we could have won the game. Then we conceded the second goal and we lost the momentum. They are a good team, but I think we can take some positive things with us."

Earthquakes media services contributed to this report.

Quakes choose young FIU defender with their first pick in 2018 MLS SuperDraft

Quakes choose young FIU defender with their first pick in 2018 MLS SuperDraft

The San Jose Earthquakes are hoping they've caught lighting in a bottle twice. 

Last season, Nick Lima emerged as one of the game's best young defenders. And on Day 1 of the 2018 MLS SuperDraft, San Jose went to the fullback well with the selection of Paul Marie from Florida International University with the 12th pick in the first round. 

"Paul has the profile we were looking for from the very beginning heading into the combine and the draft," said Earthquakes general manager Jesse Fioranelli via press release. "We were looking for a fullback. We see in him an offensive-minded outside back that has technical qualities and the ability to read the game."

Experts pegged Marie, 22, as a late-first, early-second-round selection. But a pair of solid days during the MLS Combine boosted the Frenchman's stock -- especially on San Jose's board. According to Fioranelli, Marie was No. 4 on their draft board -- having him there at No. 12 must have felt like a steal for Fioranelli and staff. 

"We especially liked that he has character and in the interview that we had with him, he convinced us," Fioranelli said. "The entire coaching staff are really excited about having him part of the club."

San Jose not only lucked out that their fourth-best footballer was there at 12, but with American parents, he does not take up an international slot for San Jose -- the team is still three players over their allotment.

In an interview after his selection with Jason Davis of Sirius XM radio, Marie told San Jose fans what they can expect from the defender. 

"They can expect Paul Marie to give it all for San Jose," he said. 

The Quakes were in need of defensive depth going in to Day 1 of the SuperDraft. In Marie, they have a fullback who can stretch the pitch from the right side and be a backup to Lima.