L.A., San Jose rivalry adds Open twist

SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES v LOS ANGELES GALAXY

Spartan Stadium, San Jose, Calif.; 7:30 p.m. PT

The original California rivals reprise their U.S. Open Cup history just three days before they'll meet in San Jose in league competition, with two pitched battles between the clubs already in the books this season. But the Galaxy have had the upper hand in the knockout competition - on the three occasions they've met in the U.S. Open Cup, Los Angeles has defeated the Earthquakes in all three, all coming in the quarterfinals from 2000 to 2002.

SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES
2005 OPEN CUP: The Earthquakes advanced to the quarterfinals of the U.S. Open Cup after a 2-0 fourth-round victory against the Portland Timbers of the USL First Division (second tier) at PGE Park in Portland. ... Wade Barrett gave the Quakes the lead in the 27th minute when he turned home a cross from the left flank from Brad Davis, then just after the hour, Ian Russell put in a cross from the other side that Brian Mullan ran onto to flick home past Portland 'keeper Josh Saunders. ... Here's Kinnear's team: Jon Conway, Kelly Gray, Danny Califf, Eddie Robinson, Wade Barrett (Kevin Goldthwaite 46), Ian Russell (Chris Wondolowski 80), Danny O'Rourke, Dwayne De Rosario, Brad Davis (Mark Chung 70), Brian Mullan (Julian Nash 86), Alejandro Moreno ... The Earthquakes will be seeing if they can put another streak to rest. The Galaxy knocked out the Earthquakes in the quarterfinals three successive years, from 2000-2002, once winning on penalties and once on a golden goal, also winning twice in northern California (one at Spartan Stadium).

IN THE U.S. OPEN CUP: The Earthquakes advanced farther than they ever had before in the U.S. Open Cup a year ago, reaching the semifinals before losing to eventual champion Kansas City Wizards 1-0. For five consecutive years from 1997 to 2002, the Earthquakes reached the quarterfinals - where they were dumped out each time - before they were stunned 1-0 by the Seattle Sounders in their opening fourth-round match in 2003. ... Each of the three previous seasons, the Quakes fell to the Los Angeles Galaxy in the quarterfinals, losing 2-0 in Fullerton in 2000, on penalties at home in 2001 after a 1-1 draw, then 1-0 in 2002. They also lost on penalties to the Chicago Fire in 1998 and to the D3 Pro League San Francisco Bay Seals in 1997. ... The Quakes have lost just twice to lower-division competition in 11 Open Cup matches - they've met MLS teams on just five occasions in the competition (and three of those against the Galaxy).

LOS ANGELES GALAXY
2005 U.S. OPEN CUP: In their fourth-round match, the Galaxy dumped stadium-mates Chivas USA out of the U.S. Open Cup with a 5-2 triumph at The Home Depot Center's Track & Field Stadium. ... Douglas Sequeira gave Chivas a lead after just four minutes when he headed home a corner kick, but Cobi Jones pulled the Galaxy level eight minutes later when pumped a poor clearance home. Then Chivas again took the lead when Ramon Ramirez curled home a free kick on 20 minutes, but Joseph Ngwenya finished off a semi-breakaway to again draw the Galaxy even (36). Just before the break, Herculez Gomez again scored, picking off a pass before firing a long-range effort to give the Galaxy the lead. After squandering numerous chances throughout the second half, the Galaxy killed off the match with two late goals, Landon Donovan punishing a poor back pass (89) then Chris Albright finishing off the contest with a stoppage time strike. ... Here's Sampson's team: Steve Cronin; Ugo Ihemelu, Pablo Chinchilla, Troy Roberts, Todd Dunivant; Paulo Nagamura, Guillermo Ramirez, Herculez Gomez (46: Landon Donovan), Cobi Jones (74: Peter Vagenas), Jovan Kirovski (55: Chris Albright), Joseph Ngwenya (91: Alan Gordon). ... "We were embarrassed up there and the way they treated Landon was appalling (in the first league meeting this year)," Sampson said. "I think this team is very much looking forward to playing San Jose, even up there."

IN THE OPEN CUP: For the first time in club history, the Galaxy were dumped out of the U.S. Open Cup in their opening match a year ago, losing 1-0 to the Minnesota Thunder (A-League) in the fourth round. It snapped a run of five consecutive appearances where they reached at least the semifinals, winning the 2001 Final against the New England Revolution but losing to the Columbus Crew the following year. ... The Galaxy have lost just five times in 19 Open Cup matches - two of those coming against Columbus Crew, once in the quarterfinals in 1999, and once in the 2002 final. The other two losses both came to the Fire, in the semifinals in both 2000 and 2003. Until last year, they of course had never lost to a lower-division side. ... Before '04, the Galaxy's shortest run in the Open Cup came in 1999, when a quarterfinal loss to the Columbus Crew followed a win against the San Diego Flash (A-League).


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