SAN JOSE, Calif. – The San Jose Earthquakes and Club America took 13 years between friendlies before renewing their acquaintance Tuesday night. After a contentious 2-1 victory for the Mexican side in International Champions Cup play, it might be even longer before the teams meet again.
Club America’s Andres Andrade and Francisco Rivera scored second-half goals within seven minutes of each other to erase an early strike by San Jose center back Clarence Goodson. That allowed the reigning CONCACAF Champions League titlists to claim a game that ended with both teams down to 10 men – courtesy of matching red cards for Quakes winger Sanna Nyassi and Club America captain Paolo Goltz – and San Jose coach Dominic Kinnear apparently banished from the sideline a few minutes before the final whistle.
The visitors had the first legitimate chance in the 11th minute. Carlos Darwin Quintero sent Andrade zooming down the right side of the Quakes’ area. San Jose goalkeeper Bryan Meredith could only push Andrade’s shot to lurking Club America forward Dario Benedetto, who took one touch before delivering a back heel that Meredith covered easily.
Three minutes later, San Jose winger Leandro Barrera drew a foul near the top of the box, setting up a free kick at 24 yards. Matias Perez Garcia curled his left-footed attempt over and around the wall, but banged it off the right post.
Goodson saw yellow but might have flirted with a red card with a horse-collar yank on the back of Benedetto’s jersey shortly thereafter, which led to the first round of shoving between the teams. Goodson’s avoidance of an ejection grew in importance when the former US international knocked home a goalmouth header to give San Jose the game’s initial goal. Club America goalkeeper Hugo Gonzalez blocked Quincy Amarikwa’s free header, but Goodson pounced on the ensuing attempted clearance from defender Osmar Mares.
The match grew progressively more chippy – four cautions were awarded in the opening half – before Erik Pimentel clattered into Nyassi deep on the Quakes’ right wing during three minutes of stoppage time. Pushing once again commenced as an agitated Nyassi got up and – after a shove backwards by Goltz – was kicked out.
San Jose made wholesale changes at the half – only Tommy Thompson, a first-half sub, and Meredith remained – while Club America were more judicious with their substitutions. The visitors brought their firepower to bear in the second half against the Quakes’ inexperienced backline, which included 18-year-old trialist Matheus Martins Silva at center back and converted midfielder Khari Stephenson at right back.
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Andrade found an equalizer in the 76th minute when he latched onto a lead pass and beat Meredith from the top of San Jose’s area. Rivera shot from almost the exact same spot in the 83rd after dispossessing Quakes midfielder JJ Koval.
San Jose rookie Fatai Alashe almost forced penalty kicks, but his point-blank shot off an 88th-minute corner kick was stuffed by Gonzalez.
The Quakes return to MLS action when they travel to play California Clasico rival LA Galaxy on Friday night.