Weekly Update: March 10, 2014

Quakes host Toluca, RSL this week for CCL, MLS home opener

THIS WEEK

The San Jose Earthquakes host Deportivo Toluca FC (Mexico) in the first leg of their CONCACAF Champions League Quarterfinal on Tuesday, March 11 at Buck Shaw Stadium. Kickoff is 7 p.m. PT on FOX Sports 2 and Univision Deportes Network. The club also hosts Real Salt Lake in their MLS opener on Saturday, March 15 at Buck Shaw Stadium. Kickoff for that match is 7:30 p.m. PT on Comcast SportsNet California, 1590 KLIV and 1370 KZSF. 10,000 fans in attendance on Saturday will receive an Earthquakes World Cup poster courtesy of match presenting sponsor Visa. Tickets for both matches are available by visiting www.sjearthquakes.com/tickets or calling 1-800-225-2277. Groups of 10 or more should call 408-556-7700 to ask about group rates.

DEPORTIVO TOLUCA FC INFO

Deportivo Toluca FC Scouting Report
Toluca enter Tuesday’s match as one of the top teams in Mexico with 22 points from their first 10 matches in the Liga MX Clausura. Toluca are one of the most successful clubs in Mexican history with 10 league titles to their name as well as a 2003 CONCACAF Champions League victory. Among the key players is Paraguayan forward Pablo Velazquez, the second-leading scorer during the 2014 Clausura with five goals. Pulling the strings from the midfield is Brazilian playmaker Antonio “Sinha” Naelson, one of the icons of the club having made over 500 appearances since debuting in 1999.

Toluca’s CONCACAF Champions League Group 6 Results
Aug. 6, 2013: Toluca 3, Caledonia AIA 1 at Nemesio Diez Stadium
Aug. 22, 2013: Toluca 2, Comunicaciones 1 at Cemento Progreso Stadium
Sept. 18, 2013: Toluca 5, Caledonia 1 at Hasely Crawford Stadium
Oct. 23, 2013: Toluca 5, Comunicaciones 1 at Nemesio Diez Stadium

Leading Goal Scorers During CCL
Raul Nava – 6
Edgar Benitez – 3
Miguel Almazan – 1
Juan Carlos Cacho – 1
Edy Brambila – 1
Sinha – 1
Ervin Trejo – 1

REAL SALT LAKE INFO

Earthquakes vs. Real Salt Lake All-Time
MLS Regular Season: 7-7-5
Home: 4-4-1 (17 GF, 13 GA)
Away: 3-3-4 (9 GF, 15 GA)
Playoffs: 0-0-0; US Open Cup: 0-0-0; US Open Cup Play-In: 0-2-0
All-Time Scoring: San Jose – 29, Real Salt Lake – 35

Real Salt Lake Scouting Report
Real Salt Lake (1-0-0, 3 pts.) won their season opener 1-0 on the road against the LA Galaxy on Saturday, March 8. Joao Plata scored in the 80th minute thanks to an assist from Kyle Beckerman, giving the visitors three points despite being out-shot 27-9. Most of the key pieces are back for last year’s MLS Cup runner-up. United States Men’s National Team pool players Kyle Beckerman and Nick Rimando return as well as Argentine playmaker Javier Morales and Costa Rican forward Alvaro Saborio. Among the other names to watch are up-and-coming midfielder Luis Gil and shifty striker Joao Plata.

Last Game vs. Real Salt Lake
Earthquakes 2, Real Salt Lake 1; Sept. 21, 2013; Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy, Utah
The Earthquakes continued their push toward the MLS Cup Playoffs with an historic 2-1 win against Real Salt Lake in front of a sold out crowd at Rio Tinto Stadium. In addition to three points, the Earthquakes celebrated their 200th win since joining MLS in 1996. Their first came on April 6, 1996 at Spartan Stadium, a 1-0 result against D.C. United in the league’s inaugural game. The match saw a flurry of goals midway through the first half with Steven Lenhart opening the salvo in the 18th minute. Rafael Baca sprayed a pass from midfield to Cordell Cato on the wing. The Trinidadian took a touch and sent a perfectly-placed cross toward the near post where Lenhart dove for a glancing header past Real Salt Lake goalkeeper Nick Rimando. The hosts didn’t wait long to respond as Kyle Beckerman and Javier Morales linked up on a corner kick one minute later. Beckerman looped a pass toward the far post where an unmarked Morales tapped home the tying goal. Lenhart capped the scoring moments later with a powerful header from close range. Shea Salinas took a free kick from 35 yards out that pinpointed the target man mid-stride, sealing San Jose’s second road win of the season.

History of the Quakes-Real Salt Lake Rivalry
Real Salt Lake joined MLS as an expansion side prior to the 2005 campaign … The two teams played to a 2-2 draw in their first-ever meeting on April 30, 2005, at Rice-Eccles Stadium in Salt Lake City, with Alejandro Moreno providing a late equalizer for San Jose … After going 2-0-2 over their first four MLS regular-season meetings, the Quakes dropped their first league tilt to RSL, 3-1, on May 31, 2008, at Rice-Eccles … The Quakes suffered two straight home defeats in league play in shutout fashion in back-to-back season openers in 2010 (3-0) and 2011 (1-0) … On March 19 the Quakes and RSL kicked off the 2011 season at Buck Shaw Stadium in a match later dubbed The Great Deluge as RSL took a 1-0 decision in a driving rainstorm through a 64th-minute Kyle Beckerman strike from 25 yards out that glanced off the left post and went in … That game marked Simon Dawkins’ MLS debut for the Quakes as a 66th-minute substitute … Real Salt Lake swept the 2011 season series with a 4-0 triumph in Utah on July 23 … The Quakes win against RSL on April 21, 2012 snapped a six-game winless streak in all competitions, including an 0-3-2 mark in the five prior MLS regular-season match-ups, and a loss via penalty-kick shootout in a 2010 US Open Cup play-in contest at Buck Shaw Stadium … The Quakes again beat RSL on June 23, 2012 by a 2-1 scoreline behind late goals from Alan Gordon and Chris Wondolowski for their first-ever win at RSL’s Rio Tinto Stadium …  RSL was the last Quakes opponent to play a regular-season match at Spartan Stadium, earning a 2-2 tie on Oct. 8, 2005 … San Jose was 3-0-0 against RSL in 2012, outscoring them 9-2 in the process … The Earthquakes dropped their first two games of 2013 against RSL, losing 2-0 on March 3 at Buck Shaw Stadium and 3-0 on June 1 at Rio Tinto Stadium, but bounced back for a key 2-1 win at Rio Tinto on Sept. 21 thanks to a brace from Steven Lenhart.

Earthquakes – Real Salt Lake Connections
Quakes forward Chris Wondolowski and Quakes defender Clarence Goodson have played with RSL midfielder Kyle Beckerman and RSL goalkeeper Nick Rimando for the U.S. Men’s National Team … Quakes forward Chris Wondolowski suited up alongside RSL defender Tony Beltran in the USMNT’s 0-0 draw against Canada on Jan. 29 at Houston’s BBVA Compass Stadium … RSL midfielder Ned Grabavoy appeared in 24 games for San Jose in 2008 … Grabavoy was a teammate of Quakes goalkeeper Jon Busch with the Columbus Crew in 2006 … Grabavoy played with Quakes forward Alan Gordon for the LA Galaxy from 2004-06 … Busch also played alongside RSL defender Chris Wingert with the Crew in 2004-05 … Wingert (St. John’s) and Quakes defender Jason Hernandez (Seton Hall) played against each other in the Big East Conference from 2001-03 … Earthquakes forward Alan Gordon (2002-03) and RSL forward Robbie Findley (2003-06) attended Oregon State … Earthquakes midfielder Atiba Harris started his MLS career with Real Salt lake in 2006 and 2007, notching four goals and two assists in 43 appearances during his stay … Earthquakes defender Ryan Neil was a first-round pick (No. 18 overall) of Real Salt Lake in the 2014 MLS SuperDraft, but went unsigned and was picked up by San Jose.

All-Time Regular-Season Series Leaders:

                                    Earthquakes                                     Real Salt Lake

Goals                          5 - Chris Wondolowski                        7 - Javier Morales
Assists                      3 - 3 players tied                                 6 - Javier Morales
Shots                         33 - Chris Wondolowski                      25 - Javier Morales
Shots on Goal           13 - Chris Wondolowski                      14 - Javier Morales
Fouls Committed    12 - Khari Stephenson                        18 - Javier Morales
Fouls Suffered         12 - Alejandro Moreno                        20 - Javier Morales

Wins                           4 - Jon Busch                                      7 - Nick Rimando
Losses                      4 - Jon Busch                                      5 - Nick Rimando
Shutouts                   2 - Busch/Onstad                                7 - Nick Rimando
Saves                         29 - Jon Busch                                    53 - Nick Rimando
Goals Allowed          13 - Jon Busch                                    18 - Nick Rimando

All-Time Regular-Season Series Game Highs: 

                                    Earthquakes                                     Real Salt Lake
Goals                          3 - Chris Wondolowski (7/14/12)        2- 5 players tied
Assists                      2 - 3 players tied                                 1 - 22 players tied
Shots                         8 - Stephenson/Wondolowski             9 - Yura Movsisyan (9/27/08)
Shots on Goal           4 - 3 players tied                                 5 - Yura Movsisyan (9/27/08)
Fouls Committed    5 - 4 players tied                                 4 - 6 players tied
Fouls Suffered         8 - Alejandro Moreno (6/18/05)           7 - Andy Williams (8/20/05)
Saves                         9 - Jon Busch (7/23/11)                      13 - D.J. Countess (4/30/05)
Goals Allowed          4 - Jon Busch (7/23/11)                      5 - Nick Rimando (7/14/12)

MISCELLANEOUS NOTES

CONCACAF Champions League Quarterfinal on March 11
The Earthquakes will host Deportivo Toluca FC on Tuesday, March 11 in the first leg of their CONCACAF Champions League Quarterfinal. Kickoff is 7 p.m. PT at Buck Shaw Stadium with television information to be announced at a later date. San Jose will travel to Mexico the following week for the second leg on Wednesday, March 19 at Nemesio Diez Stadium. Kickoff will be 5 p.m. PT with television information to follow at a later date. Earthquakes season ticket holders should use Bonus Game “A” for the match. Individual tickets are available by visiting www.sjearthquakes.com or calling 1-800-225-2277.

CONCACAF Champions League Schedule
The Earthquakes are one of eight teams to reach the CONCACAF Champions League Quarterfinal. Should San Jose advance, they would face the winner of Arabe Unido (Panama) and LD Alajuelense (Costa Rica).

First Leg
March 10 - LD Alajuelense vs. Arabe Unido, 7 p.m. PT at Alejandro Morera Soto Stadium
March 11 - San Jose Earthquakes vs. Deportivo Toluca FC, 7 p.m. PT at Buck Shaw Stadium
March 12 - Sporting Kansas City vs. Cruz Azul, 5 p.m. PT at Sporting Park
March 12 - LA Galaxy vs. Club Tijuana, 7 p.m. PT at StubHub Center

Second Leg
March 18 - Club Tijuana vs. LA Galaxy, 7 p.m. PT at Caliente Stadium
March 19 - Deportivo Toluca FC vs. San Jose Earthquakes, 5 p.m PT at Nemesio Diaz Stadium
March 19 - Cruz Azul vs. Sporting Kansas City, 7 p.m. PT at Azul Stadium
March 20 - Arabe Unido vs. LD Alajuelense, 7 p.m. PT at Rommel Fernandez Stadium

Earthquakes Connections to CONCACAF Champions Cup
The Earthquakes are participating in their first CONCACAF Champions League. However, the club did play eight games in the previous tournament format: Champions Cup. From 2002-04, San Jose participated in three different Champions Cup competitions. Current assistant coach Ian Russell scored a goal for the Earthquakes to help them advance to the 2002 quarterfinals after a 4-1 aggregate win against CD Olimpia of Honduras. Midfielder Ramiro Corrales was also a member of those squads and scored the lone goal in San Jose’s 4-1 quarterfinal loss against Pachuca CF in 2002.

Earthquakes All-Time in CONCACAF Competition
Although making their maiden voyage in CONCACAF Champions League, San Jose is not unfamiliar with CONCACAF tournaments; they previously participated in the Champions Cup in 2002, 2003 and 2004. Here’s how they fared in each of those competitions:
Note: Scores are two-game aggregates

2002
Round of 16 – Earthquakes 4, CD Olimpia (Honduras) 1
Quarterfinals – Earthquakes 1, Pachuca CF (Mexico) 3

2003
Quarterfinals – Earthquakes 4, CSD Municipal (Guatemala) 5

2004
Quarterfinals – Earthquakes 1, LD Alajuense (Costa Rica) 3

No Place Like Home
The Earthquakes are on a 19-game unbeaten streak in all competitions at home dating back to opening day of 2013, a 2-0 loss against Real Salt Lake on March 3. The club is 23-1-12 in all competitions at Buck Shaw Stadium since 2012 and 27-3-12 including matches played at other Bay Area venues.

Earthquakes Unbeaten in Nine Games
The Earthquakes are unbeaten in their last nine games dating back to last year. San Jose closed its campaign 7-0-2 in all competitions, yielding just two goals during that span. Their last loss was Aug. 31, 2013 against the LA Galaxy at the StubHub Center.

Shutouts Galore
The Earthquakes closed their 2013 campaign in sublime defensive form, allowing just two goals in nine games over the final two months of the season. Entering Tuesday’s CONCACAF Champions League affair, San Jose is on a stretch of three shutouts in their last four matches. They recorded clean sheets in seven of their last nine to end 2013.

San Jose Acquires SL Benfica’s Djalo on Loan
The Earthquakes introduced SL Benfica attacker Yannick Djalo to media on Monday after announcing a loan agreement to bring the 27-year-old to San Jose for the 2014 season. Djalo has 20 UEFA Champions League appearances to his credit as well as 32 goals in 166 first-team appearances during his nine years as a professional in Europe. He also earned one cap with the Portuguese national team and represented them at various youth levels.

Earthquakes Sign Trio of Defenders
The Earthquakes signed a trio of defenders last week, including former Bayern Munich right back Andreas Gorlitz. The club also inked rookies Ryan Neil and Joe Sofia. Gorlitz, 32, trained with San Jose throughout their preseason and will vie for minutes on the right with another offseason signing, Brandon Barklage. He joins the club after a 12-year professional career in Germany that included six years with Bayern. Sofia, 22, was a second round pick (No. 28 overall) of San Jose’s in the 2014 MLS SuperDraft. He was an All-Pac-12 selection and helped lead UCLA to the quarterfinals of the 2013 NCAA Tournament. Neil, 22, was initially drafted by Real Salt Lake in the first round (No. 18 overall) of the 2014 MLS SuperDraft, but they declined to sign the former Cal Bear outside back, giving San Jose an opportunity to pick him up. Neil helped Cal reach the quarterfinals of the 2013 NCAA Tournament and was also an All-Pac-12 selection.

USMNT to Host World Cup Send-Off Match at Candlestick Park
The United States Men’s National Team will open a three-game FIFA World Cup send-off series against Azerbaijan at Candlestick Park on Tuesday, May 27. Kickoff is 7 p.m. PT on ESPN2, WatchESPN and UniMas. The match marks the first time the USMNT will visit Candlestick Park. The U.S. has only played in San Francisco once before, garnering a 3-2 win against Japan at AT&T Park in 2006. The match will also be the first time the United States and Azerbaijan’s senior teams have played against each other. In addition to the match in San Francisco, the United States will also face Turkey at Red Bull Arena in Harrison, N.J. on Sunday, June 1 (11 a.m. PT / ESPN2, WatchESPN and UniMas) and Nigeria at EverBank Field in Jacksonville, Fla. on Saturday, June 7 (3 p.m. PT / ESPN, WatchESPN and UniMas).

2014 Broadcast Schedule
The Earthquakes and Comcast SportsNet announced their local broadcast schedule for the upcoming season last week, a slate that includes 27 games in High Definition. Combined with San Jose’s seven English-language nationally televised matches, the club will televise each of their 34 regular season games for a third straight year. Additionally, the Earthquakes will broadcast all of their regular season games on English and Spanish radio stations, 1590 KLIV and 1370 KZSF. Comcast SportsNet and the Earthquakes also introduced a new team to the booth, Anthony Passarelli and Chris Dangerfield. Passarelli is a four-time NorCal AFTRA award-winning sports anchor and reporter for KCBS. He is also the play-by-play for Santa Clara men’s basketball. Dangerfield played for the Earthquakes during the NASL and Western Soccer Alliance days and was the color analyst for San Jose from 1996-99. KNBR morning sports host Kate Scott will be back on the sidelines for her second season.

Buy-One-Get-One Chipotle Opportunity for Earthquakes Fans
San Jose was one of 12 markets chosen by Major League Soccer and Chipotle to participate in a special promotion that gives Earthquakes fans an opportunity to earn a buy-one-get-one offer at Chipotle on Saturday, March 15. Fans who wear Earthquakes gear to Chipotle in San Jose on March 15, the date of the club’s MLS opener against Real Salt Lake at Buck Shaw Stadium (7:30 p.m. PT / CSN California) will receive a buy-one-get-one offer.

Preseason Wrap
The Earthquakes finished their preseason 3-4-0, taking three of their last four. Here’s a complete list of the results:

Feb. 5 – #Lost 1-2 vs. Seattle Sounders FC
Feb. 8 – #Lost 1-3 vs. Houston Dynamo
Feb. 15 – Lost 1-2 vs. LA Galaxy at Chukchansi Park in Fresno, Calif.
Feb. 23 – %Won 1-0 vs. Portland Timbers
Feb. 26 – %Lost 0-2 vs. Vancouver Whitecaps FC
March 1 – %Won 1-0 vs. Portmore United (Jamaica)
March 5 – Won 2-0 vs. Sacramento Republic FC (USL-PRO) at CSU Stanislaus’ Warrior Field in Turlock, Calif.
# Desert Diamond Friendlies at Kino Sports Complex in Tucson, Ariz.
% Rose City Invitational at Providence Park in Portland, Ore.

Bernardez Called to Honduran National Team Duty
Victor Bernardez played 90 minutes in a 2-1 win against Venezuela in his home country last week. San Jose’s center back earned his 69th cap and also announced his retirement from the Honduran national team following their participation in the 2014 FIFA World Cup hosted by Brazil.

Bingham, Garza Loaned to San Antonio
The Earthquakes loaned goalkeeper David Bingham and midfielder Sam Garza to the San Antonio Scorpions (NASL) last week. As part of the agreement, the Earthquakes will have the option to recall either player at any point during the loan. Both players saw action in the Scorpions’ 1-1 draw against FC Dallas on Sunday. Bingham started and played 90 minutes while Garza came on as a substitute.

Earthquakes Select Santa Clara HS Student for BASST Scholarship
The Earthquakes presented Santa Clara High School senior Damont Hardnett with a check for $3,000 last week during his fourth period class as part of the BASST scholarship program. Hardnett is the Earthquakes’ third recipient of the award, recognized for being an outstanding and well-rounded student. He has maintained a 3.67 cumulative GPA while excelling on the varsity football, basketball and track and field teams. Currently enrolled in two Advanced Placement (AP) classes, he also serves as the President of the second-largest club on campus, the Black Student Union, and shoulders a major role in his Leadership class as the ASB Athletic Commissioner. On top of all of his classroom duties, he has accumulated over 200 community service hours by volunteering at libraries, retirement homes and schools, all while working a part-time job. Since 2012, the San Jose Earthquakes have been proud to be a participating member of the BAASST team, joining the other Bay Area sports franchises; the Golden State Warriors, Oakland Athletics, Oakland Raiders, San Francisco 49ers, San Francisco Giants and the San Jose Sharks. Each organization selects one recipient to earn the prestigious college scholarship in hopes to promote goals of higher education in Bay Area classrooms.

Earthquakes-Timbers Game on Oct. 4 to be Aired Live on NBC Sports Network
The club’s match against the Portland Timbers on Saturday, Oct. 4 will be aired live on NBC Sports Network. Kickoff is 8 p.m. PT at Buck Shaw Stadium. The match was previously scheduled for local viewing at 7:30 p.m. PT. All tickets issued for that match will still be valid at the gates.

Wine And Dine with the Earthquakes Slated for Sunday, May 18
The club will host its Wine and Dine with the Earthquakes event on Sunday, May 18 at Guglielmo Winery in Morgan Hill. For a third-consecutive year, guests will enjoy tasting a selection of Guglielmo's red and white wines while mingling with Earthquakes players, coaches and front office staff at the Villa Emile Event Center. They will also experience the irresistible charm of a vintage cobblestone courtyard, a picturesque backdrop with vineyards and rolling hills and a wine bar and arbor still draped with grapes on vines planted by the Guglielmo family three generations ago. The event will feature a buffet dinner courtesy of Cosmopolitan Catering, live auction, raffle and grape stomp as well as celebrity bartending from Earthquakes players. For more information and to register, visit www.sjearthquakes.com or email the club’s community relations manager, Alison Piergallini, at apiergallini@sjearthquakes.com.

Earthquakes to Host Fifth-Annual Corporate Cup
The Earthquakes will host its Fifth Annual Corporate Cup on Saturday, July 26 in San Jose. The 5v5 tournament features companies from across the Bay Area, including past winners National Tire Warehouse, DZH Phillips and DV8 Elite. Teams are guaranteed at least three games and can choose to play in Men’s Corporate, Men’s Open or the Co-Ed divisions. Registration is now open at www.sjearthquakes.com or by calling 408-556-7700. All proceeds will benefit the Earthquakes Community Fund. Packages will include a fully catered meal by Cosmo Catering during the tournament and San Jose Earthquakes match tickets. All proceeds will benefit the Earthquakes Community Fund.

Earthquakes Unveil New Logo, Jerseys
The Earthquakes unveiled the club’s new logo during a public event attended by over 4,000 fans last week at San Pedro Square Market in Downtown San Jose. The club projected images and videos onto the 12-story Sunwize building at the corner of W St. John St. and N San Pedro St. For more information about the unveiling, visit www.sjearthquakes.com.

Earthquakes to Open Levi’s® Stadium on Aug. 2, 2014
The Santa Clara Stadium Authority and the San Jose Earthquakes announced that they have partnered to present the first event at Levi’s® Stadium. The Earthquakes will play host to Seattle Sounders FC in one of Major League Soccer’s most heated rivalries on August 2, 2014. Earthquakes season ticket holders and Levi’s® Stadium SBL holders will have priority access to tickets for this event. Tickets for the general public go on sale at a later date. In order to ensure great seats at the match, fans should call the Earthquakes Front Office at 408-556-7700 to purchase season tickets today.

ACADEMY NOTES

Sinclair Commits to San Jose State
The Earthquakes added one more college commitment to their list last week in Santa Teresa High senior Darren Sinclair who opted for San Jose State. That raises San Jose’s commitments to 12 total:

Bernardo Carabelli – Stetson University
Bryce Clark – Southern Methodist
Luke Dennison – Cal State University Chico
Rodrigo Gonzalez – Yavapai College
Alex Liua – UC Santa Barbara
Max Mirner – Saint Mary’s
Josh Morton – California
Dalton Pando – UC Santa Barbara
Dominic Scotti – Wake Forest
Darren Sinclair – San Jose State
Josh Totte – Yale
Juan Velasquez – Iowa Western

Earthquakes U-16s
The Earthquakes U-16s were idle over the weekend. They’ll return to action on Sunday, March 16 against Real Salt Lake Arizona at the Mustang Soccer Complex in Danville, Calif. Kickoff is 1:30 p.m. PT.

Earthquakes U-18s
The Earthquakes U-18s were idle over the weekend. Next up is a match against Real Salt Lake Arizona at the Mustang Soccer Complex in Danville, Calif. Kickoff is 11 a.m. PT.