Where things stand for San Jose heading into Week 9
With Saturday’s match at New York City FC looming, the San Jose Earthquakes will look to continue the positive momentum from last weekend’s win over Seattle. We’re now eight games into the 34-game season, roughly 25% complete, meaning still there’s a ton to play for.
Let’s take a look at the good and the bad from the team’s start to the season:
The obvious: one win in eight is probably not how they would have liked to start the season. The team has allowed a league-high 20 goals, including at least two in seven of their eight matches to date, and has not yet earned a shutout. Additionally, the Quakes, who relied heavily on a strong away record a season ago (5-6-6), have yet to pick up a point outside of PayPal Park in three tries.
San Jose has lost just one of their last four matches in MLS play (1-1-2) and one of their last five matches in all competitions (2-1-2). Since interim head coach Alex Covelo and his staff took over, the Quakes have defeated Bay Cities FC 5-0 in U.S. Open Cup play and then took down Seattle Sounders FC 4-3, marking a perfect start to their tenure. Covelo was even named Coach of the Week for his debut on the sideline vs. Seattle.
Despite trailing in all five regular season home matches to date (four of which were by two goals), the Earthquakes have clawed back to earn at least a draw in four of them. The club is now unbeaten in five straight home matches, including regular season and U.S. Open Cup (2-0-3).
Scoring has not been an issue for the Earthquakes, who have put away 15 goals, tied for fourth most league wide. Jeremy Ebobisse has scored five, tied for third most in MLS, and Cristian Espinoza has scored four, tied for ninth most in MLS. Only Austin FC’s Sebastian Driussi (6) and Maxi Urruti (4) have tallied more goals among teammates. Jan Gregus also ranks tied for first in MLS with five assists, more than superstars such as Hany Mukhtar (4), Alejandro Pozuelo (4), Carles Gil (3), Carlos Vela (3), and Lucas Zelarayan (1).
Espinoza, who scored a hat-trick and added an assist in the win vs. Seattle, was named Major League Soccer’s Player of the Week for Week 8.