San Jose Earthquakes at Vancouver Whitecaps FC
Kickoff: 4 p.m. PT at BC Place, Vancouver, British Columbia
Television: Comcast SportsNet Bay Area
Radio: 1590 KLIV (English), 1370 KZSF (Spanish)
Places to Watch
Jack’s Bar & Lounge (San Jose), Hyde Park Lounge (San Jose), Double D’s Sports Grille (Los Gatos), Danny Coyle’s (San Francisco), SF Soccer Cafe (San Francisco)
Vancouver Whitecaps FC Scouting Report
Like San Jose, Vancouver Whitecaps FC enters Saturday’s key Western Conference tilt on short rest. The ‘Caps traveled to Commonwealth Stadium and posted a 2-0 victory over host FC Edmonton of the North American Soccer League in the first leg of their semifinal match-up in the 2012 Amway Canadian Championship on Wednesday. Vancouver goals came from Eric Hassli and Atiba Harris, both in the first half. The ‘Caps sit in fourth-place in the West standings at 4-2-2 (14 pts.). In its most recent bit of league activity, Vancouver won in shutout fashion, 1-0, at Columbus on Saturday thanks to a 25-yard free-kick goal by South Korean defender Young-Pyo Lee in the 74th minute. With former Quakes goalkeeper Joe Cannon in the net, Vancouver is the third-best defensive side in MLS at the moment, allowing just 0.75 goals per game. The ‘Caps have kept six clean sheets among their eight league matches thus far. The leading scorer for Whitecaps FC through eight weeks has been Frenchman Sebastien Le Toux with three goals. Brazilian Camilo has added a pair of strikes.
-The San Jose Earthquakes (7-1-1, 22 pts.) enter the weekend alone atop the MLS Western Conference standings. Real Salt Lake (6-3-1, 19 pts.) is in second-place with one more game played than the Quakes. Third-place Seattle Sounders FC (5-1-1, 16 pts.) still has two games in hand over San Jose. The Quakes also now pace the MLS Supporters’ Shield race over Eastern leader Sporting Kansas City (7-1-0, 21 pts.). While the Quakes visit Vancouver this Saturday (4 p.m. PT), Real Salt Lake hosts New England (6 p.m. PT), Seattle welcomes Philadelphia (1:30 p.m. PT, NBC SN) and Sporting KC entertains Montreal (5:30 p.m. PT).
-The San Jose Earthquakes take the longest current unbeaten streak in MLS to Vancouver this weekend. San Jose has gone a blistering 6-0-1 since its lone defeat of the year, 1-0 to Houston at AT&T Park on March 17. This is the Quakes’ longest undefeated stretch since a nine-game run in 2008 from July 12-Sept. 13. San Jose was just 4-0-5 during that period, however, for 17 points out of 27, whereas they have collected 19 points from 21 during this current stretch. The Quakes last had this successful a seven-game period in 2005, in the middle of their club-record 14-game unbeaten streak (11-0-3). From Aug. 27-Oct. 1 that year, San Jose went an identical 6-0-1.
-At 7-1-1 and 22 points, this is the best nine-game start to a year in the San Jose Earthquakes’ 15-season club history. In 2001 and 2003, the Quakes trotted out to a 5-2-2 start for 17 points. They were 5-3-1 (16 pts.) to open 2002 and 2010. With just nine goals conceded thus far, this is the franchise’s best nine-game defensive start. San Jose allowed 10 goals over its first nine matches in 2001, 2002 and 2010. The Quakes’ 20 goals scored is their best nine-game output ever. They tallied 18 goals through nine games in 1998, and 16 in 2004.
-At 3-0-1 for 10 points over their first four road dates, the Quakes are also off to their best four-game road start. They were 2-1-1 for seven points following their first four road forays in 2001, 2003 and 2010.
-Quakes forward Chris Wondolowski leads the Budweiser Golden Boot race with 10 goals. Thierry Henry of the New York Red Bulls is second with nine goals, but will miss Saturday’s nationally-televised tilt at The Home Depot Center with the LA Galaxy through a hamstring injury suffered last weekend against the New England Revolution.
-Wondolowski takes to Vancouver the longest active streak in MLS of games with either a goal or an assist, currently at a career-best seven.
Earthquakes – Vancouver Whitecaps FC Connections
-Vancouver goalkeeper Joe Cannon played for San Jose from 1999-2002 and 2008-10. He also played under current Earthquakes head coach Frank Yallop with the LA Galaxy in 2007. Cannon played his college soccer at Buck Shaw Stadium as a former All-American at Santa Clara University (1995-97). He grew up in Los Altos Hills and graduated in 2003 from Saint Francis High School in Mountain View, Calif.
-Yallop spent part of his youth in Vancouver from age 10-16, later earning 52 caps for the Canadian men’s national team before serving as its head coach from 2004-06. Earthquakes assistant coach Mark Watson is a native of Vancouver.
-Earthquakes midfielder Shea Salinas, who will not be available on Saturday while still recovering from surgery to repair a fractured left clavicle, played for Vancouver Whitecaps FC in 2011 after being selected by the club during the 2010 MLS Expansion Draft. Salinas was traded from Vancouver to San Jose on Nov. 30, 2011, in exchange for allocation money.
-Whitecaps FC midfielder John Thorrington was a teammate of Quakes players Jon Busch (2007-09) and Tim Ward (2009-10) with the Chicago Fire.
-San Jose defender Justin Morrow and Vancouver defender Greg Klazura were teammates at Notre Dame from 2007-09. San Jose midfielder Anthony Ampaipitakwong and Vancouver midfielder Michael Nanchoff were teammates at Akron for four years from 2007-10, leading the Zips to their first national championship in 2010. Ampaipitakwong also played with ‘Caps rookie forward Darren Mattocks at Akron as a senior in 2010. Mattocks and Earthquakes midfielder Khari Stephenson are both Jamaican nationals.
-Earthquakes midfielder Sam Garza and Vancouver defender Michael Boxall played together at UC Santa Barbara during the 2010 season. Boxall and Earthquakes goalkeeper coach Jason Batty were both born in Auckland, New Zealand, and have represented their country at the senior international level.
-Earthquakes midfielder Simon Dawkins (Edgware) and Vancouver midfielder Matt Watson (Bromsgrove) are both natives of England.
@SJEarthquakes – Official account of the San Jose Earthquakes (#SJEarthquakes)
@QuakesMatchday – NEW! this season, follow for live updates on game days
@Whitecaps FC – Official account of Vancouver Whitecaps FC (#WhitecapsFC)
MLS MatchDay 2012 – The official Major League Soccer app, providing up-to-the-minute score updates, in-game highlights, news and more.