Tag Archive | "Frank Yallop"

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Wondo Keeps Quakes Top of Table

Posted on 23 September 2012 by Kyle Alm

Seattle Sounders slim chance at winning the Supporter’s Shield was crushed Saturday evening in Seattle when the San Jose Earthquakes put on an offensive display that shows that they truly belong at the top of the MLS Table. The two sides have been building some bad blood recently, a couple of close matches, a couple of physical altercations, the same mutually exclusive prize in an unbalanced schedule and you’ve got a budding rivalry.

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It didn’t take long for the Quakes to get started, in the 2nd minute Simon Dawkins was given space to shoot from a yard beyond the penalty box semi-circle. It was a horrible start for Sounders at home, all Michael Gspurning could do was watch it sail into the top corner and voice his displeasure at his defenders. Although it is not uncommon to give a midfield player space that far away from goal, it was too much space and the shot was not challenged by a defender.

Sammy Ochoa starting in place of Eddie Johnson, suspended for yellow card accumulation, was given his first real opportunity to start in MLS action and made an important contribution when he was able to beat his defender with a flick and then crossed the ball, Fredy Montero tried for it near the middle of the goal, but it was just out of reach. Steve Zakuani was ready for the ball when the cross went past the Colombian, and finished unmarked to draw the Sounders level.

San Jose Earthquakes were the dominant team in the first half, they were able to pass the ball with more ease, get forward in dangerous positions, create crosses, and get shots on goal. Their winner came on a corner kick that was conceded by Adam Johansson & Michael Gspurning in an awkward fashion. The corner kick went over the goal frame and was sent back in by Victor Bernardez and flicked past Gspurning by Chris Wondolowski, who stayed on pace with Roy Lassiter’s record 27 goals from 1996. Wondowlowski has 22 goals now with 4 matches left in the season to catch Lassiter.

Zakuani, who had been the hero moments earlier, was caught on the back post after the ball had been played out initially, he stayed on the post for the second cross into the box by Bernardez. A player can’t be offside on a corner because of where the ball is on the end line, when a player is stuck on the post defending you can’t be offside then either. Wondowlowski would have been offside had Zakuani stepped off the post, Ianni gave space, and tried to close when he realized he was onside, but it was too late.

As much as San Jose came out screaming in the first half, their enthusiasm was considereably muted in the second half. Scoring opportunities, crosses, were all down in the second half as the Quakes looked to defend their lead in Seattle. Sounders looked better and did have a better second half, but when the opposing team is bunkering down to defend a lead you can’t help but look better than you did before.

Sounders only managed one shot on target the entire night, Zakuani’s goal. Jon Busch didn’t have a single save.

Usually rivalries are give and take, but it’s been all San Jose this season and the Sounders have been taking it. San Jose had always been a good offensive side that defended poorly, Frank Yallop has gotten his side organized and kept the goal differential on the positive side by 26 goals after tonight’s match. Sounders fans would probably start a rivalry with any team that Steven Lenhart is on.

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Earthquakes Look to Prevent Series Sweep

Posted on 31 July 2008 by Evan White

For the first time since June 10, the Earthquakes will have the luxury of playing two home games in a row. Although this week’s “home” game will be played at McAfee Coliseum on Sunday at noon, the San Jose players haven’t spent this much time in the Bay Area in months. Unfortunately the LA Galaxy will feel right at home in Oakland. This will be the second LA-SJ matchup in the Quakes three games in at McAfee Coliseum. Between the on-field familiarity and frenetic faithful, the Los Angeles Galaxy will have an unusual level of comfort for a road game. Aside from the throngs of David Beckham fans, the Earthquakes must be ready for the media circus set to roll in to town.

While the playoff hopes might be dashed, the Earthquakes have plenty to play for in the chance to salvage one game from their bitter rivals. So far the Galaxy have controlled the season series, winning both of the previous games. The latest match ended in a 3-0 romp for LA, as Edson Buddle completed his second hat trick of the season to route the Quakes. Despite the tough loss, the David Beckham attention tidal wave did spur the largest Earthquake home crowd in history, with an attendance of 39,872.

It has been a busy week for San Jose’s players and front office. On Sunday they returned home with a few fresh faces to take on the New York Red Bulls. The defense did not allow a goal, but the game still ended in a 1-1 tie. Four minutes in to the game, Red Bull Dave van den Bergh sent a non-threatening long cross in to the San Jose box. Defender Eric Denton attempted to head the ball back to keeper Joe Cannon, but the ball slipped over Cannon for the own goal. The rest of the game was nearly spotless for San Jose, as they played what Yallop referred to as one of their best efforts in the post-game press conference.

“The first half was probably the best that we’ve played this year. We obviously gave them an early goal, but throughout the game, I never felt threatened even though they had, I think, one of the best players in the league on the field. Finishing is the thing that we are struggling with right now, but that will come.”

Just nine minutes after their own goal, the Earthquakes were able to equalize off a Ronnie O’Brien throw in. The new acquisitions did not wait long to have a major impact, as Scott Sealy received the O’Brien throw in with his back to the goal. Sealy’s quick shot was deflected away by keeper Jon Conway, but the rebound was quickly throttled by Darren Huckerby for the first goal of his MLS career. The two have started to forge an early chemistry, as Huckerby was able to adjust his play off of Sealy’s tendencies.

“I have been watching Scott [Sealy], he tends to turn and shoot pretty early so I knew he was going to shoot, but I didn’t know if the goalkeeper was going to drop it or not. He dropped it and I don’t tend to score many tap-ins, but it counts the same as a long shot, so I’m pretty pleased with it.”

San Jose brought in another big name this week, acquiring Arturo Alvarez from FC Dallas for a first round pick in the 2009 SuperDraft and allocation money. This will be Alvarez’s second tour of duty with the Earthquakes, as he was originally drafted by them in 2003. In press release John Doyle displayed his excitement for the new addition, and the multitude of positives he brings with him.
“Arturo is a dynamic attacking player who should fit in well with our team… He can play both in midfield and at forward so he also has great versatility, which is important for us as we continue to build our team.”

Alvarez scored 11 goals and had 11 assists in 86 appearances for FC Dallas, establishing himself as a young weapon who will contribute for many years to come. As San Jose has been acquiring forwards throughout the season, they traded one away this week as well.
Forward Kei Kamara was sent to Houston in exchange for allocation money and a 2009 SuperDraft first round pick. The Sierra Leone native has scored two goals for the Earthquakes in 12 games, including 11 starts.

The Galaxy are coming off a 4-0 loss at the hands of FC Dallas, who were able to slow the Los Angeles attack. Kenny Cooper provided two goals for Dallas, while Dominic Oduro and Abe Thompson each slotted a goal of their own.

The game was an all around poor performance by the Galaxy, providing a sentiment of frustration that the Earthquakes are hoping to replicate. David Beckham tore in to his team in a press release after their loss to FC Dallas, clearly unhappy with the club’s effort.
“We didn’t deserve to win, we didn’t play well, we didn’t start the game well and our effort was bad to start the game. So there’s nothing really positive to take from the game. The best team won on the day and congratulations to them but we’ve got a lot to work on. We have to forget this game now and try to think positive about the game next weekend.”

San Jose’s defense has been especially spectacular lately, and will need to continue as so against one of the league’s most potent offenses. The Earthquake backline has allowed only 3 opponent goals in the past 5 games. If the new additions can make continue to make big contributions, the Quakes will finally get their first win at “home field” McAfee Coliseum.

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Return to Canada for Yallop

Posted on 18 July 2008 by Scott Ferguson

Frank Yallop will bring his San Jose Earthquakes side to Toronto on Saturday as the only Canadian manager in Major League Soccer, with Yallop hoping that his knowledge of players like Jim Brennan and Greg Sutton can help him break the club’s undefeated home streak in league action.

Toronto’s only blemish on their record at BMO Field was a Canadian Championship loss to Vancouver Whitecaps, as the Reds have enjoyed the comforts of home during league play with five wins and three draws.

In matches this year in the United States Toronto have won just one game, a 3-2 decision over Los Angeles Galaxy back in April. Carver’s men fell 2-1 in Chicago last week on a stoppage time goal by the Fire’s John Thorrington, the Reds’ sixth road loss in 2008. Such a dismal run away from home has meant that Toronto’s games at BMO Field take on even more significance for the club’s playoff hopes.

Yallop is familiar with Canadian soccer, having coached the national team from in the last World Cup qualifying cycle. His last trip to BMO Field came even more recently when his LA Galaxy side drew TFC last season He’ll have to watch from afar and relay messages to the club’s staff this time around, however. Yallop is suspended from the bench having received five cautions already this year.

O’Brien

It’s been stressful for San Jose, winless in six games going into Toronto. One player already used to such expansion woes is Ronnie O’Brien, the midfielder who was a part of Toronto’s inaugual campaign in 2007 but was restricted to just 13 appearances, emerging as a fan favourite nonetheless. A recurring knee injury meant that O’Brien sought greener pastures than the artificial turf at BMO Field in the off-season.

That chance came with the Quakes, who had already recruited Yallop to return to the Bay area for the team’s second coming. The Canadian boss had a highly successful spell at the former incarnation of the Quakes from 2001 to 2003.

O’Brien’s is questionable for the Toronto clash with a hamstring strain, with Gavin Glinton and Kelly Gray also likely to miss out. Nick Garcia is suspended along with Toronto midfielder Maurice Edu, whose teammates Todd Dunivant and Danny Dichio are on the injured list.

One player looking to benefit from Dichio’s absence is 16-year-old Abdus Ibrahim, the former FC Dallas starlet who recently joined the Reds and scored off the bench on his debut last Saturday. With English striker Paul Dickov still in talks with Toronto FC and English clubs in the second and third tier, Carver is short on firepower up front and may turn to Jeff Cunningham and Ibrahim over misfiring Kiwi striker Jarrod Smith.

Toronto are bracing for a big week and may be forced to rotate their squad ahead of Tuesday’s must-win Canadian Championship tie against Montreal Impact. There promises to be a cup final atmosphere ahead of the game, with TFC needing a win to lift the Voyageurs Cup in front of their home fans.

Jim Brennan will star for the MLS All-Star Team against West Ham United in his home ground two days later, making it three in five days if he features in both of the Reds’ matches this week.

TFC fell at home in friendly action on Tuesday night, dropping a 1-0 decision to Argentina’s Independiente. Toronto also had talented youngsters Marvell Wynne and Maurice Edu called up to the United States’ Olympic side for the tournament in Beijing this summer.

Check the Quakes page for our correspondent Evan White’s take on the upcoming game. Saturday’s encounter can be viewed on CBC in Canada.

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Quakes head North of the Border

Posted on 17 July 2008 by Evan White

With only two years of existence as a franchise, Toronto FC has established its fan base as some of the most passionate and traveling faithful in the MLS. Unfortunately for San Jose fans it is they that will have to make the nearly 2700 mile trip to Toronto for the Earthquakes match this Saturday at 8 P.M. PT. The Quakes will look to continue add on to their effort against the Honduran squad, and swipe a victory from a Toronto team still licking their wounds from a loss to Chicago.

As a team with one of the worst road records in the MLS at 1-6-0, Toronto was happy to hold on to a tie with the Fire as the game reached its waning moments. However Chicago midfielder John Thorrington deflected an attempted clear by opposing keeper Greg Sutton. The Justin Mapp scrambled for the recovery and slotted the ball back to Thorrington, who was able to push the shot past a frantic Sutton for the game winning goal in stoppage time. A deflated Toronto had to stomach the loss in windy city, a game they felt sure they had at least a tie. The Reds have struggled through a bevy of injuries, playing without leading goal-scorer Danny Dichio due to side effects from a concussion suffered earlier in the season. San Jose feels a similar strain on their offense from lack of bodies, leading to another low scoring affair last week against Colorado.

For the first time in nearly two months San Jose returned to the friendly confines of Buckshaw Stadium, but their 1 goal effort was nothing new. Although a Ryan Johnson header gave the Quakes a short lived lead in the 62nd minute, Colorado was able to equalize with a goal in the 70th minute by Connor Casey. The goal spurred Quakes Coach Frank Yallop in to a frenzy, as his usually calm demeanor turned ugly in a hurry. Yallop was irate that on Colorado’s goal, Casey pushed Jason Hernandez in the back on the way to his header. The San Jose coach has done an exceptional job of keeping an even keel all season, with the ability to maintain a positive stance through the usual expansion squad struggles. However his frustration reached a boiling point, as he was ejected by referee Hilario Grajeda for arguing the non-call. Yallop was able to bring the boil to a simmer, calmly speaking about his team’s performance in the post game press conference.

“I thought we played better in the second half than in the first half. It’s frustrating because I thought our guys worked hard enough. I’m not sure if we should have won or not, but we were certainly in a position to win.”

The repeatedly rock-solid defense may have helped soothe the San Jose head coach, as he acknowledged their efforts in handling Colorado’s attack.

“We showed that we can shut a team down pretty well today. We limited their chances and Joe (Cannon) was not forced to make many saves. That was a positive today.”

As for the ineffective frontline, the cavalry has been called in by the San Jose front office. The Quakes signed forward Darren Huckerby, after acquiring his right from Toronto FC for allocation money and an international player slot. The striker has played his last five seasons with Norwich City of Norfolk County. A proven scorer, Huckerby has been named to the Norwich all-time best XI. Having played for Norwich, Manchester City, Leeds United and Coventry City, Darren Huckerby hopes to gel with Yallop and mend San Jose’s offensive issues.

Darren will not be the only new face in the San Jose clubhouse, as forward Scott Sealy was acquired as well. The former Kansas City Wizard was obtained for allocation money. Midway through his fourth season, Sealy has 28 goals and 5 assists for his career. At 27, Sealy provides another striker that could aid the Earthquakes for years to come. His potential has not been fully reached, as he continues to improve on his nine goal introductory season which earned the title of a Rookie of the Year finalist.

The new comers will look to have a bigger impact that some of the other San Jose signings. Peguero Jean Philippe was brought in to provide flash and scoring, but found himself out for the season before making a significant contribution. Jovan Kirovski and Kelly Gray have also found themselves missing time due to injuries. Although injuries have hampered the recent signees, GM John Doyle remains excited about his news players.

“Darren should make an immediate impact on our team with his ability to go forward… He can score goals and create goals, and he brings with him a wealth of experience in top leagues. We are excited to add a player of his experience and quality to our team… Scott is a proven goal scorer in this league… He has a good sense around the net and should immediately bolster our attack. He is an excellent addition to our team.”

Midfielder Joe Vide, selected in the fifth round of the expansion draft, was waived by the team to make room for the new additions.

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Huckerby knows the way to San Jose

Posted on 14 July 2008 by Scott Ferguson

Toronto FC have traded their discovery claim on English forward Darren Huckerby to San Jose Earthquakes for allocation money and a senior international roster spot, the club confirmed today.

Huckerby had been spotted in the director’s box at BMO Field with Mo Johnston during the Canadian Championship match at home to Vancouver, amidst rumours that the Reds’ Director of Soccer was looking to sign the former Norwich hitman.

Instead, Huckerby, an old teammate of Jim Brennan’s at Norwich, was persuaded by Canadian manager Frank Yallop to join the Earthquakes.

“We had Huckerby here for a couple of days, but he’s decided to test the waters in San Jose,” Johnston told the club’s website.

It is likely that the artificial surface in Toronto helped sway Huckerby against joining the Reds. He would follow ex-TFC midfielder Ronnie O’Brien in citing the turf as a motivating factor in moving to San Jose.

Ex-Manchester City and Blackburn striker Paul Dickov, also spotted at the Vancouver game with Johnston, is rumoured to be milling over a 1-year contract offer from TFC.

The trade brings Toronto’s number of senior international places on the roster to 18. Conceivably, the club could field an entire senior roster of players without Canadian citizenship.

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