Rapids-Earthquakes Preview

BY foxsports • August 13, 2015

Although one of the league's most prolific scorers has returned, the San Jose Earthquakes are accomplishing little offensively aside from newcomer Quincy Amarikwa.

The Colorado Rapids know the feeling as the lowest-scoring team in MLS.

Chris Wondolowski will try to end his scoring drought and help San Jose avoid falling behind Colorado into the Western Conference basement with its first victory since late June on Friday night.

The Earthquakes were outscored 17-5 while losing all seven of their matches in July, including two in the International Champions Cup. Wondolowski and midfielder Cordell Cato were away on Gold Cup duty for most of that stretch, but San Jose hasn't fared much better since they returned with an 0-2-1 record.

The squad's nine-game winless streak across all competitions - six in MLS play - is eerily similar to the club-record 15-game collapse in which it was outscored 30-12 at the end of last year. Matias Perez Garcia, who has a team-high six assists, could miss his second straight game with a leg injury.

"We've had absolutely no luck," coach Dominic Kinnear told the league's official website. "Sometimes you make your own luck, too. We're doing a lot of things to keep pressure on ourselves."

Kinnear's club, two points ahead of West-worst Colorado, would be in worse shape offensively if it weren't for the acquisition of Amarikwa from Chicago on June 26. He scored for the fourth time in four matches Saturday, but San Jose managed a season-low six shots in a 2-1 loss at Houston.

No one else has scored since the club's 3-1 home win over Los Angeles on June 27. The Earthquakes have since been shut out in all three of their home games.

Wondolowski hasn't scored since that day, managing only two shots on goal in three matches since returning to the club after not coming off the bench in three games for the United States. Wondolowski, who has a team-high nine goals, scored in four straight May contests starting with a 1-all draw at Colorado.

James Riley provided the equalizer for the Rapids in extra time as the clubs played to their fourth straight draw. Colorado, though, has gone 0-5-6 in the series since last winning in August 2011.

The Rapids (5-8-9) should be able to make things tough on the Earthquakes (7-10-5) since they rank near the top of MLS with 24 goals allowed. They also recently added Honduran Maynor Figueroa and fellow defender Sean St. Ledger, who had been waived by Orlando City.

Colorado, though, has scored a league-low 20 goals with one in each of its last three matches. The club has totaled one goal in its past five on the road as it heads into new Avaya Stadium for the first time.

Following a season-high three-game winning streak, the Rapids have failed to hold early leads in home losses to Los Angeles and Columbus this month.

They're now facing an Earthquakes backline that has allowed just six goals in nine home games.

"We have to get three points in San Jose," defender Drew Moor told the team's official website. "The past two performances at home haven't been what we've wanted them to be and so it's important that we (play well) on the road against a team we feel like we match up well against."


in this topic

share story