Kaval's Kickoff: An amazing opening week of 2014
What an amazing opening week of the 2014 San Jose Earthquakes season! Most clubs would be hard pressed to win or equalize one match all year on the last play of the game. The Quakes did it TWICE in one week.
We now have 17 second-half stoppage-time goals that have led to 15 wins or draws since 2012. Unreal. The heart and dedication of our players is infectious and demonstrates an unbelievable ability to overcome adversity and rise to the challenge at hand. This is a group of players and a style of play that is symbolic of the devotion of our fans and the history of our club. I am proud to lead such a great organization and cannot be more optimistic about our future. This is going to be a fun season.
We have a big challenge this coming week when we travel to Mexico to play Toluca FC at over 8,000 feet in their fortress of a stadium: Estadio Nemesio Diez. The stadium has hosted World Cups in 1970 and 1986 and is considered one of the most difficult places to play in the World.
After Alan Gordon’s late heroics this week to get a 1-1 draw, we need to win, a draw with more than two goals or a 1-1 draw followed by an advantage in penalty kicks to advance in the CONCACAF Champions League. We are taking the match very seriously and hope to channel our never-say-die spirit to advance to the semifinals against the winner of Panamanian club Arabe Unido and Costa Rican side Alajuelense.
Wednesday’s match will be broadcast on FOX Sports 2 and Univision Deportes at 5 p.m. PT. We’re inviting all fans to join us at the Britannia Arms in Downtown San Jose for an official viewing party. If you can’t make it, be sure to check your channel listings because you don’t want to miss this massive game for the club.
The last couple of weeks have seen a ton of great progress on the stadium. The steel erection is almost complete with a topping off ceremony scheduled for next week. In the continuing spirit of community participation in all aspects of the stadium development, we will allow fans to sign the last steel beam before it is hoisted into place on March 28. Fans can come out next week and sign the beam between 3:30-5 p.m. until the beam is ready for installation. It is a tradition to honor the ironworkers with a picnic or BBQ after they complete the steel erection and we felt that including the community and our players was a great way to celebrate such an historic occasion. Please RSVP for the BBQ here. I hope to see you there.