MLS Snapshot: New York Red Bulls 2-0 San Jose Earthquakes

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One game in about 100 words: The San Jose Earthquakes have already shown playoff-worthy form only at certain points this year, notably during their 3-2 win over Seattle Sounders, but this match against the Red Bulls reminded manager Dominic Kinnear that his side still lacks much needed consistency. Defensive errors led to the Red Bulls two goals, while the boys from the Big Apple were graced with no handball calls against them. Even when San Jose’s midfield managed to string together encouraging flows of possession, the Quakes couldn’t muster the decisive touch necessary to expose NY’s back line. The Red Bulls remain unbeaten in league competition this year, which slots them at first place in the Eastern Conference for now.

 

Three moments that mattered

28’ — Kljestan opportunistic for opening score — Felipe managed to muscle out a tackle that caused one of many San Jose Earthquakes turnovers and tapped it forward to Bradley Wright-Phillips for the quick give-and-go look. When the Brazilian received a return pass inside the box, he knocked the ball for a diving Wright-Phillips on the doorstep. But after the former Manchester City player missed, Kljestan was waiting at the left post to convert the elusive chance.

35’ — Grella nets number two — Lloyd Sam was matched up with Clarence Goodson on the right edge of the box and surveying the field for a second, he found Mike Grella unmarked at the far post and whipped in a cross toward him. You could see Wright-Phillips drawing the attention of two defenders for part of the sequence, in addition to multiple Earthquakes caught ball-watching. Grella did well to square his shot for the close-range goal.

71’ — Substitute Tommy Thompson grinding it out — The Earthquakes had been outplayed for a large majority of the match, but when Chris Wondolowski and Tommy Thompson came on the field as substitutes, the attack eventually gained some steam. In this instance, Thompson was very active in the box and able to get two shots on net in under a minute to threaten goalkeeper Luis Robles. The 19-year-old is looking to gain more minutes after getting his feet wet in 2014, his rookie year.

 

Lineups

New York: Luis Robles; Chris Duvall, Matt Miazga, Damien Perrinelle, Kemar Lawrence; Dax McCarty, Felipe, Lloyd Sam (Sal Zizzo 76′), Sacha Kljestan (Sean Davis 86′), Mike Grella (Dane Richards 78′)

San Jose: Dave Bingham; Marvell Wynne, Victor Bernardez, Clarence Goodson, Cordell Cato; J.J. Koval (Chris Wondolowski 56′), Fatai Alashe, Matias Perez Garcia; Sanna Nyassi (Tommy Thompson 68′), Innocent, Shea Salinas (Leandro Barrera 79′)