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Match Preview: Three match storylines against Sporting Kansas City

SAN JOSE, Calif. - After defeating the Colorado Rapids 1-0 this past Friday at Avaya Stadium, the Quakes hit the road for two key matches in Kansas City and DC. First up: Western Conference foe Sporting Kansas City. Ahead of tonight’s 5:30 p.m. kickoff time, we take a look at three match storylines at Sporting Park. 

1. Quincy, MD, and Dr. Goodson: The Earthquakes did some good things on offense and defense in a 1-0 win over the Colorado Rapids as Quincy Amarikwa continued his surgical and swashbuckling attacks, adding an assist to go with his four goals in just six games played since being acquired from the Chicago Fire. He also had another jaw-dropping play, somehow keeping the ball in play with a sliding effort and then drawing a yellow card. Center back Clarence Goodson enjoyed a blast from the team's previous win on June 27, scoring the winner on a header and earning a spot on the MLS team of the week. Shaun Francis produced one of his better efforts stepping in for injured left back Jordan Stewart, who was lost for the season with a torn left Achilles tendon -- a heartbreaking setback for the team and the player. The friendly Stewart, 33, of Birmingham, England, has been an outstanding and very durable player since arriving midway through the 2013 season. 

2. Comeback Quakes: Everyone’s talking about Sporting Kansas City’s scintillating 4-3 comeback win over the Vancouver Whitecaps, but the Earthquakes are making a comeback of their own. They find themselves six points behind the sixth-place Seattle Sounders, which currently holds in the final playoff spot. San Jose has two games in hand on the Sounders, but games in hand are meaningless if you don't get points out of them. A win or a tie on Wednesday would put a little heat on seventh-place Houston, which entered the week two points ahead of San Jose. A midweek road game against an SKC side in excellent form, averaging a league-best 1.82 goals a game, hardly seems like a recipe for success, but the Quakes always give an honest effort under coach Dominic Kinnear. SKC is in a tough stretch of five games in 15 days, but it is 12-0-4 across all competitions at home this season. The Quakes are also embarking on a tough week, also with a game at Eastern Conference-leading DC on Saturday. But they will close the season with seven of nine at Avaya Stadium, beginning with the rubber game of the California Clasico against the LA Galaxy on Aug. 28 

3. A new Godoy in San Jose: Midfielder Anibal Godoy said all the right things after taking one for the team in a confidence-building win over the Rapids, which snapped the Quakes six-game winless streak and put them back in the playoff conversation. The Panama international played 90 solid minutes the day he hit town to join his new club, which was no huge surprise considering his world-class pedigree. True professionals are always ready to play when healthy. Godoy brings some central midfield seasoning in to go with rookie U-23 national team players Fatai Alashe and Marc Pelosi, both 21. 


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