3/7 Regular Season FC Dallas vs. SJ Earthquakes – Pre Match Notes

3/7 Regular Season FC Dallas vs. SJ Earthquakes – Pre Match Notes

Coming off of a solid win in Avaya Stadium’s soft opener last Saturday, the Quakes are more than eager to put their last season behind them and get the new one started. The Quakes will start their season on the road, visiting FC Dallas. Dallas had a pretty solid season last year, where they finished 4th in the Western Conference and made it to the conference semifinals. One of the key games in their season was a 5-0 shutout against the Quakes in August where Rookie of the Year winner Tesho Akindele notched a hat trick on the road. However, the Quakes did win the season series, defeating them 2-1 in 2 other matches.

Things to Watch

  • The Quakes are still recovering from some slight injury issues with Steven Lenhart sidelined and Clarence Goodson, and Innocent Emeghara listed as questionable. Emeghara is tending to a minor shoulder injury he picked up earlier in the preseason, Goodson hadn’t practiced all week due to MLS PU labor talks in Washington, and Lenhart does not have a timetable for when he will return.
  • Especially against the high powered FC Dallas offense (the speed for Fabian Castillo, the technical ability of Mauro Diaz, etc) the Quakes will probably look to play it a bit safe in their first game on the road. This, combined with the key injuries that they have, will lead them to probably utilize a 4-2-3-1 formation.
  • I’d say in addition to this, the Quakes will be more conservative with their approach to this first game. Being on the road, with a few key injuries, and with plenty of speed all across the field, the Quakes will look to play a more counter-oriented game.
  • Adam Jahn not only had the best preseason for the Quakes, but also in all of MLS. Jahn might get the chance to prove himself with some first team minutes with Innocent Emeghara questionable for today, and he will likely be hungry to make an impact on the season right of the bat.
  • Chris Wondolowski scored 40% of the Earthquakes’ goals last year. He has also been MLS’s top goal scorer since 2010, and the most consistent goal scorer since 2010. As usual, he will bring his passion and hunger to the game, and will definitely want to get the season started the same way he did in 2012.
  • Former Quake Atiba Harris will be taking on his former team, after FC Dallas selected him in the Re-Entry draft. If Harris does score, expect televisions to be broken.

Predicted Starting Lineup

  • Nyassi and Barrera will probably fight for the starting position as the season continues. Nyassi started last game against LA, and overall had a very good game. Barrera came on as a sub later on, and also looked dangerous with his speed. Their play styles are very similar, but will Kinnear go with the seasoned veteran in Nyassi, or the young Argentinian in Barrera?
  • Stewart did not play against LA last Saturday, and Francis had a solid game. If Stewart is still battling an injury, Francis will start for sure.

Predictions

  • Fans can expect the Quakes to continue the strong play that they saw from them in the preseason finale against LA Galaxy.

READ MORE2/28 Preseason SJ Earthquakes vs. LA Galaxy – (3-2) – Post Match Notes

  • The new speed of the Quakes will continue to be a factor that pesters teams, and will lead to some openings in the FC Dallas back line tonight.
  • Quakes ride the success they had last game, and under new head coach Dominic Kinnear, will continue their streak of good play. 2-1 win.

Photo Courtsey of MLSSoccer.com

Anay Patel

I have been a lifelong Quakes fan, and founded Quakes Epicenter in November of 2014. I have been credentialed to cover the Quakes since the 2015 season, and currently serves as the lead editor of the website. Outside of the Quakes, I am currently a student at the University of Southern California studying Computer Science and Business Administration.

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