Galaxy Advances to Open Cup Semis with 2-0 Win Over San Jose Earthquakes
San Jose had reached the quarterfinal round for the third time in three tries and was seeking a berth in the semifinals for the first time. Instead, the Galaxy, thanks to second-half goals by Mauricio Cienfuegos and Seth George, will move on to face the Chicago Fire in the semifinals on August 23.
In front of 4,345, Cienfuegos scored the game-winner in the 77th minute, followed by George's goal in the 81st minute.
Unfortunately for the Earthquakes, newly signed Giovanni Savarese was unable to make his debut on Wednesday night. The Italian soccer federation failed to send the necessary transfer paperwork to U.S. Soccer prior to the match, so the high-scoring forward was forced to sit out.
Other missing Earthquakes included Wade Barrett (left groin surgery), Dan Calichman (left hamstring strain), Ronald Cerritos (right quadricep strain) and Mauricio Solis (Costa Rica National Team). The Galaxy were without Luis Hernandez, who was home in Mexico for the birth of his child.
"Giovanni might have made it a different game," Earthquakes Coach Lothar Osiander said. "Instead, we had the same problems we've had all year. We missed our opportunities. We missed three breakaways and should have been up by at least 2-0 before they scored."
The scoreless first half was spent mainly in the Earthquakes' defensive end, but it was San Jose's Abdul Thompson Conteh who had the best scoring opportunity. He took a nice through pass to get past the Galaxy defense in the box, but had his shot turned away by an onrushing Matt Reis in the 39th minute.
The Galaxy had an 8-5 shots advantage in the first half, and Earthquakes goalkeeper Joe Cannon made a couple of nice stops to keep it scoreless. In the 19th minute, he made a diving stop on a Jorge Salcedo shot, and in the 35th minute, he came out of the goal to knock down a shot by Cobi Jones, who had broken free on a fastbreak.
The Earthquakes started strongly in the second half, with another good opportunity in the 49th minute. Khodadad Azizi rolled a pass in front of the goalmouth, which Conteh barely missed on. A Galaxy defender touched it, and it rolled just past the left post. In the 62nd minute, Conteh had another chance on a through ball, and Reis made another nice stop before Conteh could get the shot off.
One minute later, the Earthquakes' Ian Russell got past the Galaxy defense and into the box. He was pushed from behind as he took a shot that went wide left. Russell appealed for a penalty but there was no call.
The Galaxy turned the tide later in the second half. Following a scramble in the box, Simon Elliott took a point-blank shot from the penalty spot and Cannon made a fantastic save in the 76th minute. Cienfuegos' game-winner came one minute later, in the 77th minute, as he got the ball in the box and chipped it over an onrushing Cannon. The ball bounced slowly toward the goal and defender Jimmy Conrad nearly got back to clear it away, but was a second late.
George's goal in the 81st minute gave the Galaxy some insurance, as he worked a give-and-go with Sasha Victorine in the penalty area, then drove a low shot past Cannon.
Things got a little more tense in the second half, with four yellow cards issued and a few minor skirmishes. The Galaxy outshot the Earthquakes, 16-9.
This was the third meeting this season between the Earthquakes and Galaxy, who will play a total of five times in 2000. The first two MLS matches resulted in draws. The upcoming two matches are August 26 at Spartan Stadium and August 30 at the Rose Bowl.
2000 LAMAR HUNT U.S. OPEN CUP MATCH REPORT
|Participants:||L.A. Galaxy (MLS) vs. S.J. Earthquakes (MLS)|
|Competition:||2000 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Quarterfinal|
|Venue:||Titan Field (Fullerton, Calif.)|
|Date:||August 9, 2000|
Galaxy - Cienfuegos, (Vagenas), 77,
Galaxy - George, (Victorine), 81.
EARTHQUAKES - G Joe Cannon, D Ryan Tinsley (M Wojtek Krakowiak, 85th), D John Doyle, D Jimmy Conrad, D Mike Burns, M Richard Mulrooney, M Travis Mulraine, M Dario Brose, M Khodadad Azizi, M Harut Karapetyan (M Ian Russell, 46th), F Abdul Thompson Conteh (F Scott Bower, 86th).
GALAXY - G Matt Reis, D Greg Vanney, D Robin Fraser, D Paul Caligiuri, D Danny Califf, M Jorge Salcedo (M Peter Vagenas, 57th), M Mauricio Cienfuegos, M Simon Elliott, M Cobi Jones (F Seth George, 63rd), F Sasha Victorine, F Sebastien Vorbe (M Zak Ibsen, 71st).