Match Preview: San Jose Earthquakes vs. FC Dallas

FCD looking to end slide against San Jose's strong defense

SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES vs FC DALLAS
BUCK SHAW STADIUM, Santa Clara, Calif.
May 10, 2014 (WEEK 10, MLS Game #88)
9:30 p.m. CT (CSN-BA; TWCSN-TX)

The San Jose Earthquakes and FC Dallas meet in a key match in the Western Conference when the clubs face off Saturday evening at Buck Shaw Stadium. The Quakes remain home after playing to a scoreless draw at midweek with the Colorado Rapids, still at the bottom of the West standings. FC Dallas saw their losing slide reach three games, also at midweek, starting their road swing with a 2-1 loss at Seattle Sounders FC.

REFEREE: Chris Penso. AR1 (bench): Frank Anderson; AR2 (opposite): Jeff Hosking; 4th: Daniel Radford
MLS Career: 50 games; FC/gm: 23.1; Y/gm: 2.9; R: 13; pens: 16

SUSPENDED: DAL: Je-Vaughn Watson (through May 11)
WARNINGS:
SUSPENDED NEXT YELLOW CARD: none
SUSPENDED AFTER TWO YELLOW CARDS: DAL: Fabian Castillo
DISABLED LIST: SJ: Tommy Muller
INTERNATIONAL ABSENCES: none

HEAD-TO-HEAD
ALL-TIME (50 meetings): Earthquakes 23 wins (4 shootout), 82 goals … FC Dallas 16 wins (3 shootout), 57 goals … Ties 11
AT SAN JOSE (25 meetings): Earthquakes 14 wins (4 shootout), 47 goals … FC Dallas 6 wins (2 shootout), 25 goals … Ties 5
RETURN MATCHES: 5/31: FC Dallas vs. San Jose Earthquakes, 7:30 p.m. CT; 8/16: San Jose Earthquakes vs. FC Dallas, 7:30 p.m. PT

LAST YEAR (MLS):
5/25: DAL 1, SJ 0 (Castillo 33)
8/24: DAL 2, SJ 2 (Perez 19; Michel 72 – Gordon 8; Beitashour 16)
10/26: SJ 2, DAL 1 (Martinez 27; Wondolowski 57 – Keel 90)

  • FC Dallas hasn’t won in Santa Clara since 2009. The Quakes have won three of the five home meetings since, with two draws.
  • When FCD defeated San Jose 1-0 last May 25, it ended a six-game Dallas winless streak in the series. FC Dallas had last defeated the Earthquakes on June 5, 2010, a 2-0 victory in Frisco.
  • Coaches record: Mark Watson v DAL: P2 W1 L0 D1 … Oscar Pareja vs. SJ: P6 W0 L5 D1

SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES
The San Jose Earthquakes played to their second scoreless draw of the season with the Colorado Rapids, this time reaching the result on Wednesday evening at Buck Shaw Stadium. The Quakes are in eighth place in the Western Conference with 7 points from 8 games.

LAST MATCH

  • Rapids goalkeeper Clint Irwin made seven saves – several of the spectacular variety – to keep the clean sheet. None were bigger than an 88th-minute deflection of Chris Wondolowski’s attempt from seven yards, which caromed off the post and back out.
  • Quakes 'keeper Jon Busch was credited with four saves at the other end.
  • Quakes boss Mark Watson made six changes to the team that fell 3-2 to Vancouver Whitecaps FC at BC Place. Andreas Gorlitz and Ty Harden came into the back four, Atiba Harris, Khari Stephenson and Jean-Baptiste Pierazzi came into the midfield and Alan Gordon started up top, with Brandon Barklage, Clarence Goodson, Cordell Cato, JJ Koval, Sam Cronin and Yannick Djalo all out of the team.
  • SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES (4-4-2): Jon Busch - Andreas Gorlitz (Brandon Barklage 46), Ty Harden, Victor Bernardez, Jordan Stewart - Atiba Harris (Cordell Cato 77), Khari Stephenson (JJ Koval 81), Jean-Baptiste Pierazzi, Shea Salinas - Chris Wondolowski, Alan Gordon.

TEAM NEWS

  • The Quakes recorded their second consecutive shutout at Buck Shaw Stadium and third in four matches overall, wrapped around the 3-2 loss at Vancouver.
  • After a three-match absence, Jean-Baptiste Pierazzi also returned to the Earthquakes lineup, playing the full 90 minutes in central midfield.
  • “Now I feel really better, and tonight I tried to play the way I like to play, to keep the ball and distribute it, everything like that,” Pierazzi said. “I think tonight was a good game. It was maybe one of our best games, with the ball and also without the ball, because I think we defended [well]. ... We need more time, but I think we are in a good way."
  • Khari Stephenson made his first start in league play this season, playing 81 minutes in a central midfield role. He had last played in the second leg of the CONCACAF Champions League semifinal vs. Toluca of Mexico; his only league appearance was in the opening match of the season, coming off the substitutes’ bench.
  • “I think we did well at moving the ball today,” Stephenson said. “We didn’t rush it too much. I think we had good possession as well. It was purposeful possession. We slowed it down when we needed to slow it down, went when we needed to go.”
  • Said Watson: “When you don’t win games, you look at different things. You put those guys in there. They haven’t played together, and it looked like they’d played 50 games together. So it was nice to see. … I thought they both deserved a chance. So we’ll see. Most spots are up for grabs. If players come in and do well, they deserve to play again. Both of them gave a good account, and we’ll see about Saturday.”
  • Added Chris Wondolowski: “I’ve always said we’ve been able to combine. We just have to have the confidence and a bit of the space to do it. When we start doing that, it starts opening up the game and opening up chances.”
  • There was a major injury blow for the Quakes after fullback Andreas Gorlitz suffered a knee injury and did not play in the second half. Gorlitz will undergo surgery to repair a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee and is lost for the remainder of the season.
  • Said Quakes captain Chris Wondolowski: “That was gutting. Any time you see a knee injury like that, it makes your stomach turn. You never want to see that for either team, any person. Andy’s a great guy and really playing well, so it’s unfortunate.”
  • Ty Harden made his second start of the season in central defense, with Clarence Goodson unable to feature after making six consecutive starts in the back four.
  • “We inserted Ty into the starting lineup with Clarence out with an injury. Ty is a big-time, steady pro. He plays well every time he is asked to do so,” said goalkeeper Jon Busch. “Then, Brandon [Barklage] steps in for [Andreas] Gorlitz for the second half and makes two big plays on the end line against some very fast and tricky players. The boys played well tonight.”

FC DALLAS
FC Dallas saw their losing run reach three games, Seattle Sounders FC coming back with two second-half goals for a 2-1 win Wednesday evening at CenturyLink Field. FC Dallas sit in third place in the Western Conference with 16 points from 10 games.

LAST MATCH

  • FC Dallas took the lead in the 16th minute. While chasing a ball over the top, Brad Evans got his feet tangled up with FCD striker Blas Pérez and referee Baldemero Toledo pointed to the spot. Michel then coolly finished from the spot.
  • Sounders FC drew level in the 62nd minute. Obafemi Martins split a pair of defenders with a pass from the right flank to Lamar Neagle at the near post, and he sent a neat, quick touch past FCD 'keeper Raul Fernandez from the edge of the six-yard box.
  • The game-winner came in the 88th minute from almost identical circumstances. This time, Martins worked the ball down the left channel and sent in a cross to Kenny Cooper, who was unmarked in front of goal, and he side-footed home first-time from the top of the six.
  • FCD head coach Oscar Pareja made four changes to the team that dropped a 1-0 decision to the New York Red Bulls at Toyota Stadium. Zach Loyd and Michel came into the back four and Adam Moffat and David Texeira came into the midfield, in place of Jair Benitez, Victor Ulloa, Fabian Castillo and the suspended Je-Vaughn Watson.
  • FC DALLAS (4-1-3-2): Raul Fernandez - Zach Loyd, Walker Zimmerman, Matt Hedges, Michel - Hendry Thomas - Adam Moffat, Danny Garcia (Victor Ulloa 72), Andrew Jacobson (Jair Benitez 78) - David Texeira (Fabian Castillo 65), Blas Perez

TEAM NEWS

  • FC Dallas saw their losing streak extended to three games, matching the longest of the season this year in MLS.
  • “Definitely we wanted to control the tempo of the game. We knew it's a place where we know the fullbacks are coming up, the forwards are moving in a way that may put us in a [tough position],” said FC Dallas head coach Oscar Pareja. “But I don't think that was the case. We defended well and tried to keep the resolve that we had at the moment.”
  • There was a significant tactical change for FC Dallas. After playing almost exclusively with a lone striker, Pareja paired David Texeira and Blas Perez.
  • Hendry Thomas played a holding role in midfield, while Adam Moffat and Andrew Jacobson played wide roles in the center of the park, with Danny Garcia again in the playmaking role behind the front two.
  • “We play with the players that belong to the team and they had a game three days ago and now we have another game in three days,” said Pareja. “That's the way the schedule was set and so we play with the boys that are healthy and the boys that can come in and do the job. With the formation we prepare the game depending on the opposite team, too.”
  • Said Jacobson: "We wanted to keep the good shape we were playing with in the first half and at the same time try to play through their lines of defense. They attacked very well but our guys fought hard, we just couldn’t hold on at the end there.”
  • Having made five consecutive starts in a deep-lying central midfield role, Michel started at left back. He scored his fourth goal of the season, his third from the penalty spot.
  • "We knew that Seattle was going to come pressing and attacking, so we knew that we needed to pass the ball, control the ball, and pass quickly,” Michel said. “We held the result but ended up getting goals against us; goals that are unexpected and uncommon for us to get.”
  • There was significant injury news ahead of the match when it was announced playmaking midfielder Mauro Díaz will miss from 6-10 weeks after undergoing surgery on his right knee. Díaz was forced from the field before halftime in the loss to New York.
  • Another injury blow struck when defender Kellyn Acosta was ruled out for up to six weeks after also suffering a left knee injury.