The Loons went into today’s contest with a record of 3 wins and 6 losses. Good enough for 5th in the western conference. Their opponent, the San Jose Earthquakes entered today with the worse record in the west with just one win. That win coming against the Loons in their season’s home opener.
Things started early when San Jose winger Magnus Eriksson, weaved into the penalty area then being subsequently tripped, earning his team a penalty. It was Eriksson who converted from the spot to give his team a 1-0 lead in the opening minutes of the game.
Minnesota United would not have a decent chance until the 20th minute. A cross was floated inside the penalty area which was headed away by San Jose. Fortunately, the attempted clearance fell directly to Ibson who fired off a volley that went wide.
It was the 26th minute when the Minnesota United crowd witnessed an absolutely beautiful shot from Christian Ramirez. It started from a giveaway by San Jose in their own third which went directly to Ramirez. From the corner of the right side of the 18 yard box, Ramirez turned and fired, striking a ball that went perfectly over the keeper and into the side netting of the San Jose goal.
In the 42nd minute, the Loons had another fantastic opportunity to take the lead. Ramirez found himself one on one with the keeper but managed to put his shot high, colliding with the crossbar.
Just before halftime, Darwin Quintero played a lovely ball across field to Miguel Ibarra who fired a shot that San Jose keeper Andrew Tarbell, just got a touch on to keep out of the back of the net.
In the second half, it was back and forth between the two sides. San Jose managed to break through by a truly strange chain of events. A compilation of defensive mishaps by Minnesota lead to goal scored by San Jose forward Danny Hoesen in the 69th minute.
To make matters worse, Minnesota United gave up another penalty a mere 5 minutes after allowing a second goal. Chris Wondolowski of the Earthquakes, stepped up and slotted it past keeper Bobby Shuttleworth to make it 3-1.
The scoring would stop there as San Jose picks us there second win of the season, both against Minnesota United. It was a disappointing afternoon for the Loons supporters as their team has now dropped 2 in a row, while heading into next week taking on Sporting Kansas City, who lead the western conference in points.
Manager Adrian Heath will need to sort out the defensive errors in short time if the Loons look to have further success in their 2018 campaign. Darwin Quintero has been phenomenal since his arrival and has brought the offense to another level. If we can find a balance between the two, winning will follow. Minnesota United will be at home when they take on Sporting Kansas City on May 20th.
photo credit mlssoccer.com