The San Jose Earthquakes failed to keep pace in the Western Conference last weekend following a 3-1 loss to Toronto FC, and they found themselves below the red line in the table that signifies the six teams that will qualify for the MLS Cup playoffs. After the results already posted this weekend, the Quakes find themselves even further behind the pack and will need a three-point result against FC Dallas on Sunday to pull even with the Hoops and the LA Galaxy for fifth place in the West.
San Jose will look to star striker Chris Wondolowski to lead the team against Dallas. Just a few weeks removed from scoring the 100th goal of his MLS career, Wondolowski is now only three goals away from reaching the century mark in goals scored for the Quakes. The U.S. international has scored in four straight games for San Jose and has eight on the season, good for second in MLS behind Columbus Crew forward Kei Kamara. A goal-spree on Sunday at Avaya Stadium could push Wondo to the 100 mark and the top of the MLS scoring chart.
The Earthquakes missed the services of Matias Perez Garcia in last week's loss at Toronto, but it appears the Argentine central midfielder will be back on the field this week. FC Dallas is currently three points ahead of the Quakes in the West, so a win is vital. San Jose lost once already this season to Dallas, a heartbreaking 1-0 loss in Frisco, TX to open the season, so they will be looking for revenge against the Hoops.
The match at Avaya Stadium will be nationally televised by Fox Sports 1, kick-off scheduled for 4:00 p.m. Fans that can't make it to San Jose for the match can follow along on the radio at 1590 KLIV and 1370 KZSF. The Quakes FanKave will be live with conversation and commentary; the app can be downloaded at fankave.com. Online streaming will be provided by Fox Sports 2 Go, and a rebroadcast of the game will be available at MLS Live.
San Jose will hope to have center back Clarence Goodson back in the starting eleven this week after the U.S. international had to leave the game at Toronto with a hamstring injury. Portuguese center back Paulo Renato is unlikely to play against Dallas due to the same injury, so veteran Ty Harden will be the emergency starter if Goodson is not able to go.
The Quakes are also without center midfielder Fatai Alashe, who as part of the U-23 U.S. men's national team recently completed a third-place finish in the prestigious Toulon tournament in France. Dynamic youngster Tommy Thompson is also away on national duty as the U-20 USMNT continues its run at the FIFA U-20 World Cup in New Zealand.
Following the Earthquakes vs FC Dallas match on Sunday, the Quakes U-18 academy team will take the field at Avaya Stadium to play its season ending match against local rivals Juventus. The game kicks off at 6:30 p.m., and with a win, the Quakes kids will capture their first-ever division championship.