After an exhilarating 3-0 victory over the Portland Timbers last weekend, the San Jose Earthquakes were dealt a leveling blow in today’s woeful defeat to MLS strugglers the Colorado Rapids. For all the excitement generated by their dynamic attacking display last weekend, Dominic Kinnear’s men fell flat in an uninspiring performance against the lowest team in the MLS table.
Colorado netted two goals in quick succession in the first half followed by a third from Shkelzen Gashi in the second period, and a strong performance from Tim Howard in goal helped the home side keep their first clean sheet of the season.
Given the Quakes’ success attacking through the middle against the Timbers last weekend, Colorado flooded the midfield with numbers on the defense to successfully stifle the creativity of Jahmir Hyka, Chris Wondolowski and Danny Hoesen.
“The second goal, for me, right before halftime changes the score but also the mentality,” said coach Dominic Kinnear. “As many good things as we did last week, we made a lot of mistakes this week and they took advantage of it.”
Despite Kofi Sarkodie’s strong performance against the Timbers, he struggled against Colorado. The home side should have scored the opener within ten minutes after Sarkodie was beaten down the wing, only for former Quakes forward Alan Gordon to blow the easiest of tap-ins from the rebound of a diving save from David Bingham.
Sarkodie lost his marker again in the buildup to Colorado’s first goal, with Gashi sneaking in behind to convert Mohammed Saeid’s low cross.
Colorado were quick to build on their momentum, doubling their lead just four minutes later as Dominic Badji tripped up Animal Godoy in the middle of the park and sprinted through on a long breakaway to bury a low effort past Bingham.
Badji was responsible for the creation of Colorado’s third on the other side of the half, muscling off his defender and passing in for Gashi to emphatically fire into the back of the net.
The Quakes marginally threatened in the latter stages of the match as Godoy was slipped in behind from Hyka’s incisive pass in the sixty-first minute, but Howard came off his line to make a big stop. Danny Hoesen wasn’t frightened to swing at speculative efforts from long distance but rarely troubled Howard either, sealing yet another disappointing road loss for the Quakes.
Defender Florian Jungwirth at least owned up with an apt apology. “I hope you got no ‘eye cancer’ from watching,” he wrote on his Instagram.