by Miguel Cabrera | The San José Earthquakes defeated Real Salt Lake 5-2 and advanced to the quarterfinals of the ‘MLS is Back’ tournament Monday.
San Jose scorers were Cristian Espinoza in the 21st minute, Magnus Eriksson in the 49th and 96th minutes (both penalties), Valeri Qazaishvili in the 61st minute and finally Chris Wondolowski in the 86th minute.
On the other hand, Douglas Martínez and Damir Kreilach of Real Salt Lake were the team’s two scorers at 22 minutes and 75 minutes.
We have to recognize the great game of both teams that from the first minutes came out to give everything on the field. San Jose started controlling ball possession and it was in the 21st minute, after a great team move, that Espinoza scored the first goal of the night. Just a minute later, a defensive error came from San Jose’s Kashia, leaving Douglas Martinez of RSL in front of the goalkeeper to score a beautiful goal, making the game 1-1 at half time.
Four minutes after the start of the second half, RSL’s Alvin Jones fouled inside the area and San Jose’s Magnus Eriksson scored the penalty kick. In the following minutes the goalkeepers made important saves, but it was Valeri Qazaishvili that scored the third goal for San Jose Earthquakes (3-1) at 61 minutes. RSL did not stop fighting; Damir Kreilach made a cross shot impossible to stop for Daniel Vega at 75 minutes, bringing the score to 3-2.
That goal brought hope to RSL, but it was in the 84th minute when Marcelo Silva committed a hard foul that resulted in his expulsion from the game. Unfortunately, 2 minutes later, Chris Wondolowski scored the goal that ended Real Salt Lake’s aspirations to continue in the tournament. Finally, at 96 minutes, Magnus Eriksson scored the last goal of the game (5-2).
It’s a shame that Real Salt Lake was eliminated from the tournament, but when the league resumes, they will be a more solid team and they will be fighting for the title.