SANTA CLARA — The Earthquakes did not belong on the same field as FC Dallas Saturday evening at Buck Shaw Stadium, getting destroyed by the visitors 5-0 to end a four-game San Jose unbeaten streak.
The loss goes down as the worst in San Jose Earthquakes history.
After the match, Earthquakes’ keeper Jon Busch did not mince words when summing up the performance:
“They kicked our ass from minute one to minute 90. Very disappointing. Very disappointing. We’re at home, it’s embarrassing.”
With the Quakes entering the match on their best run of form in 2014, coach Mark Watson could hardly explain what happened:
“I thought this team was in a good moment. There was a good feeling about the team and to have that kind of performance in what was an important game is really deflating.”
Dallas rookie striker Tesho Akindele scored a hat trick and Fabian Castillo notched a brace for the visitors who continue a 10-game unbeaten streak of their own.
The San Jose defense looked like a junior varsity squad trying to deal with the skilled Castillo, who carved up the Quakes back line and was a major part of three goals.
Photos by Godofredo Vasquez/SFBay
Watson said the coaching staff made a point in preparation for the match to not allow Castillo time and space on the ball. That plan was not put into practice:
“He’s someone that we really looked at. He’s obviously got a ton of pace….The number one was prevent him from turning and running at you. While we’re attacking we need to be organized because they want to feed off that…It wasn’t even counter attack, we couldn’t handle him in any phase of the game.”
Busch echoed the sentiment:
“Castillo with his pace is a great player and he caused a hell of a lot of problems today. Tesho (Akindele) was the recipient of a lot of work by him….He gave us all kinds of fits tonight.”
Castillo showed his insane athleticism 30th minute on what could only be described as a clinic against the San Jose defense.
When a Victor Bernardez kick was deflected into the Dallas attacking half, it looked like Quakes defender Jason Hernandez would have no problem beating Castillo to the ball, with the Columbian three steps behind him.
By the time Hernandez reached the ball however, Castillo was level with him, and even an American football tackle couldn’t stop the winger, who broke free from Hernandez’ grasp and finished with a cool chip over the outstretched arms of Jon Busch.
Akindele doubled the score before half-time, rolling a ball into the far post from a tough angle, beating the diving keeper for a second time.
San Jose found a glimmer of hope right before half, when recent designated player signee Matias Perez Garcia was pulled down in the box leading to a penalty call from referee Daniel Radford.
The Quakes unfortunately could not capitalize, with Chris Wondolowski skying the spot kick over the crossbar.
Wondo came close to scoring again shortly after the break when he redirected a Shea Salinas cross, beating Dallas keeper Raul Fernandez, only to hit the left post.
Again it was the combination of Akindele and Castillo that burned San Jose in the 58th minute, when Castillo’s shot was not parried away by Busch, leading to an easy toe poke for Akindele’s second of the night.
Castillo did most of the work, with San Jose making the mistake of letting the Columbian turn and get a full head of steam. The Quakes never found an answer for Castillo’s speed and skill for the entirety of the match.
Not to be outdone by his teammate, Castillo scored again in the 74th minute, after another Bernardez error left him one-on-one with a helpless Jason Hernandez. Castillo again ran past Hernandez and beat Busch at his far post for his eighth goal of the season.
Bernardez had a rare off night, possibly due to a protective mask he was forced to wear after suffering a broken nose.
But Akindele couldn’t help himself, scoring on another tap in in the game’s closing moments, for the first hat trick of his career and his seventh of the season.
San Jose defender Shaun Francis was forced off in the 10th minute after sustaining a leg injury.
19-year-old Tommy Thompson entered the match in the 72nd minute giving the San Jose supporters something to cheer about. The first homegrown player in club history said afterwards that he is injury free after arthroscopic surgery on his right knee.
The 5-0 defeat is San Jose’s worst of the season, and their fifth home loss of 2014. San Jose remains in 8th place in the Western Conference, with the playoffs starting to look out of reach for Mark Watson’s side.
Busch said this is one San Jose will have to forget:
“We gotta throw this one away. It’s embarrassing. I’m embarrassed. If I was a fan I’d be pissed off with that performance from every single one of us tonight. We’ve been on a role and that was a kick in the nuts and it can’t happen again. It’s embarrassing.”