Wait, what happened to our Week 8 match coverage?
While most major media reported that
For the Week 9 match at Real Salt Lake, the Reddit /r/SJEarthquakes group met again at San Francisco Athletic Club (see the previous Week 7 LOBINA account), some fans discussed meeting at McNally’s on College in Oakland (near Rockridge BART), Jack’s Bar hosts its usual horde of Ultras & über-fans, but, based on Twitter chatter, LOBINA trekked over to check out the crowd at Rookie’s Sports Lodge on Meridian in San Jose.
Rookie’s has a large common room, flanked by big booths on one side and a full bar along the other. Many tall tables and stools stand in the center, with TVs of various sizes ring the room up by the ceiling. ProTip: go Tall Table, as a crowded center creates "obstructed view" seating at the low booths.
Above-standard sports-bar servings (both kind of fried: battered and deep) and servers (more dangerous curves than a Garcia Perez free kick). The happy hour fish tacos sport a lovely slice of avocado, and the nachos come piled high on a metal platter, enough to feed the entire center section.
ProTip: the Quakes scarf around your shoulders is a dangerously-convenient wiping surface for greasy fingers—so keep a napkin in hand or give the scarf a good soak when you get home.
Pre-game your heart, liver, and head with Happy Hour Fish Tacos, Lagunitas IPA, and
I! I Believe! I Believe That! I Believe That We!
I BELIEVE THAT WE WILL (B)EAT THESE NACHOS!!!
When LOBINA social media minion arrived at Rookie’s most TV’s were turned to hockey, A’s, or the coverage of the 2nd day of the NFL draft (or, "Print a list and get on with it!"). Jordan, the manager on duty, was happy to change some TVs to the
Manager Jordan, soccer fan himself who gets up for early weekend Premier League matches, said that usually staff from the Quakes staff come down to watch away games at Rookies, though they usually call ahead of time. There is a back room with large TVs available for reservation—this night a large group came to watch the Giants game—and some of the Common Room TVs are connected to the Back Room and so must show the same program.
If Quakes fans organized a wee bit, we definitely could fill the Back Room—by the end of the
Wall-to-wall Quakes action. Notice the "Emeghara" jersey—with the name-change to "Innocent" this jersey is now a collector’s item, as rare as his goals. (Too soon?)
Many couples showed up at Rookies, with partners of varying fan-intensity levels from longtime Season Ticket Holders, to "being dragged to" events, to enjoying the new stadium. Veronica and Chris came with matching blue and black home jerseys. While Veronica sat quietly watching the match with seismic intensity, Chris hardly sat down, preferring to sip his Yamazaki-12 while standing at the center table. Bay Area soccer roots run deep: Veronica still excited she watched the USWNT beat Brasil 2-0 at Stanford during the 1999 World Cup. Now Quakes Season Ticket Holders, both very much enjoy the new Avaya Stadium, and their Section 110 neighbors very much enjoy LOBINA: "All first half they’re in their seats, but all second half they’re down at the bar."
Rich watched rapt in his Quakes away jersey, though partner Abby sat quietly comfortable in her own clothes. She grew up in
Rich: Only issue I have is the men’s bathroom line is too long.
Abby: What?!? The MEN’S line?
Everybody still not happy the only bathrooms are down on concourse level, and that there’s only 5 of them. (And Rich hasn't read our investigative exposé on the cause of long men’s bathroom lines).
Julie and Dan are also Season Ticket Holders, in Section 112. "Love being near the Ultras and other Supporters Sections—great energy!" Dan’s been a Quakes fan for awhile, as evidenced by his QuakeFan website where he posts a panoply of Quakes fan portraits. Julie has issue swith another couple: assistant refs Ian Anderson (on the sideline for RSLvsSJ) and his twin brother Frank. "Not only do they never call the hard, reckless fouls, but they’re also D-Bags in real life."
DID YOU KNOW? There are two sets of twins who AR in MLS for PRO: in addition to the
Andersons, Apolinar and Eduardo Mariscal also patrol the lines. However, the winner of the AR Best Name Contest belongs without doubt to "Kermit Quisenberry."
With a lively crowd came lively chatter, starting before the match:
"Wondo at wing? WTF?!?"
"Wondo at mid hasn’t worked in the history of Wondo."
"YEEEAAAHHH!!!" (2’ Beckerman Yellow Card).
"Wait, Wondo’s actually playing up."
"Listing Wondo as DM was a trick!"
"Like listing him on the roster as 1-Dough."
"New Team Goal: three consecutive passes in the attacking half!"
Of course the room erupts at Wondo’s goal, though many were mystified at the Jedi magic he used to stay onside: "This is not the offsides position you are looking for."
But iffy MLS reffing seems to be dominating the conversation more than usual:
And while the Quakes passing improved a few particles over the last match, there’s still plenty of room for improvement:
#RSLvSJ: 37 total fouls and 68.4% combined passing accuracy; 2nd most fouls and 2nd worst passing % in a MLS game this season.— Ben Jata (@Ben_Jata) May 2, 2015
After a long run of matches in which fav centerback behemoth Bernárdez surprised everyone by not earning a single yellow card, he surprized everyone again by showing off his mad (own) goal scoring skillz. However, the rest of the Quakes could take the time to improve their own touches:
Only two SJ starters - Cordell Cato & Chris Wondolowski - had pass completion % above 70%. Five starters had below 60%. #RSLvSJ— Jeff Carlisle (@JeffreyCarlisle) May 2, 2015
Sad to be our own worst enemy, but a tie is a point, and a road point at that. Two things most Quakes fans agreed on:
Both goals were flukes, but I'll take the road draw. Definitely something to build on. Beckerman also should have been ejected. #RSLvSJ— William Bohn (@Liverquake666) May 2, 2015
And, except for an occasional oops, Bingham has shown himself to be a quality ‘keeper:
But two goals are two goals, and a road point is a road point, which allows us the satisfaction of asking slumping RSL a simple question:
LOBINA will enjoy the upcoming