I really want to beat the Earthquakes, I really do. Firing one of the most regressive coaches in MLS has tempered some of that but not by much. Anyway, let’s get to know San Jose, or as the city is known, America’s AV Club.
The Earthquakes of San Jose have come to our barbecue for the Fourth of July. As a franchise the Quakes have the distinction of having their franchise move to a different city, win several championships, and then be re-started as a hapless shell of its former self searching in vain for the formula to find the success that it had before moving away. Essentially, they are the Cleveland Browns of MLS.
Aside from that the biggest highlight in the existence of the team in MLS is that they had Landon Donovan long enough for him to win them two championships and realize that getting wicked homesick and washing out in Germany was better than living in suburban San Francisco. Donovan went on to become the best American in MLS history and won four MLS Championships with the LA Galaxy.
As for this year, somehow the Quakes have managed to win 7 games by scoring just 20 goals through 18 matches. In attack they value fortunate bounces, defensive lapses, the ineptitude of Clement Diop, and playing against RSL to get results. This highlight exemplifies the San Jose plan in possession:
First, they line up behind the fullback and have their striker run the length of the field wearing sandals. When they get close enough to the goal, they execute a handoff, the halfback cuts past the keeper, and leaps into the goal. The key is the red card celebration which needs to be more emphatic than celebrating the goal itself. Side note* if Wondo had used his hands against Belgium he still would have found a way to miss that goal.
San Jose itself is an interesting place. It is home to eBay, PayPal, and Samsung and is the wealthiest city in the country. The city also has the largest wealth gap in the United States. It is a place filled with young men who have ideas they gleaned from Ayn Rand books which somehow inspired them to invent the Juicero, hold the #FyreFestival, and sue Gwaker.
In response to much of society’s ills, these fellas are all eager to explain how an app they’ve developed will address an issue like hunger or poverty somehow without actually facing the underlying social, political, and economic exploitation that perpetuate these issues - no, all you need is a smart phone with an app on it and have the ability to conflate economic freedom and civil liberties - poof, solved.
Anyway, - stick to sports - back to the soccer. The Earthquakes are so bad at scoring goals that Joey Chestnut will eat more hot dogs in 10 minutes this afternoon than the team will score goals in two MLS seasons. What’s more, it’s not that many hot dogs, it is only like 70 red hots. Chestnut has real skill and talent at what he does, plus that if I were from San Jose I’d give eating myself to death a shot as a career as well.
All that aside, Chestnut is a real life American hero. If Chris Wondolowski entered the Nathan’s Hot Dog eating contest, he would get the last hot dog - dunk it in water to soften the bun - and then when he went to take a bite, he would inexplicably miss his mouth with it. He is no Joey Chestnut.
What I’m trying to say is I hope Joey Chestnut is the only winner from San Jose today and Atlanta United hangs a whole bunch of goals on the Earthquakes.