Quakes drop friendly to Leicester City 3-1

MLS side falls to first defeat of England tour; Wondo tallies

Mark Watson and Frank Yallop

Photo Credit: 
Courtesy of San Jose Earthquakes

LEICESTER, England — The San Jose Earthquakes slipped to a 3-1 defeat on Thursday to a Leicester City outfit peppered with first-team members. Chris Wondolowski scored the lone goal and Ellis McLaughlin missed a late PK for the MLSers.

The disappointing result was compounded by injury scares to midfielder Ramiro Corrales and defender Tim Ward, although the injuries are not thought to be serious.

The result disappointed Quakes head coach Frank Yallop, who said he thought his players struggled playing their third game in as many days. However, he said he understands it's still early days this preseason.

“It’s not about the result right now," Yallop told MLSsoccer.com. "It’s about getting ready for our season.”

The Quakes started the game flat and fell behind after eight minutes when the English Championship (second tier) team was allowed too much space on the edge of the area. Elliott Chamberlain hit a powerful shot into the top right corner.

San Jose fell further behind after 18 minutes as a lack of communication allowed Nathan Hicks to run onto a through ball to score with a low finish.

But the visitors rallied and created a number of chances. Steven Lenhart and Ryan Johnson both missed good headed opportunities while Wondolowski saw a clever flick saved by the Leicester 'keeper.

Despite this, the defense leaked and Jon Busch was forced into making a handful of smart saves. The back line was not helped by the need to substitute Corrales in the 28th minute with a calf strain and then Ward on the stroke of halftime with a tight hamstring. They were replaced by Chris Leitch and Justin Morrow, who played right back and left back, respectively.

San Jose got themselves on the board in the second half when Lenhart, who worked tirelessly all afternoon, charged the Leicester ‘keeper down on a back-pass and the ball spilled to Wondolowski to finish instinctively.

“I thought [Lenhart] was a handful up front,” Yallop said.

Unfortunately San Jose could not build on the goal and they soon conceded a penalty when Chris Leitch fouled Miguel Vitor. The spot-kick was scored by Dan Uchechi and, at that point, Yallop decided that the players were too tired to continue and made a host of substitutions.

The changes saw the Quakes push forward in search of a second goal and they got the perfect chance in the 90th minute when Matt Luzunaris was brought down in the penalty area. McLaughlin took the PK, but it was too close to the ‘keeper and was easily saved.

Lineups

San Jose: Jon Busch, Tim Ward (Justin Morrow 45), Brandon McDonald (Steven Beitashour 60), Ike Opara (Bobby Burling 60), Ramiro Corrales (Chris Leitch 28, Travis Pillon 68), Joey Gjertsen (Ellis McLaughlin 60), Sam Cronin (Brad Ring 60), Khari Stephenson (Anthony Ampaipitakwong 60), Ryan Johnson (Trialist 60), Steven Lenhart (Matt Luzunaris 60), Chris Wondolowski (Tony Donatelli 68).

Leicester City: Robert Ambrusics, Aleksandar Tunchev (Rob Paratore 65), Miguel Vitor, Tom Parkes, Bruno Berner (Theo Brown 85), Ben Milnes, Nathan Hicks, Joao Teixeira, Leon Crncic (Craig King 70), Elliott Chamberlain, Dan Uchechi.

Scoring summary: Leicester - Elliott Chamberlain 8, Nathan Hicks 18, Dan Uchechi 60.
San Jose – Chris Wondolowski 53.

Disciplinary: No cards shown.

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