The Quakes must win and hope if they are going to make it to the post-season. A team that finished below them last year, Real Salt Lake, sits 11 points ahead of San Jose with 45, and is looking to punch its ticket to the post-season.
Line Up & Formation
As Dom said in his Houston post-match presser after the 2-1 loss, “the 4-4-2 is the system we’ve been running all year” and I don’t expect that to change, especially with the disaster that Dawkins has been trying to play a CAM. Expect the double-pivot 4-4-2 with Godoy and Ceren as the two CDMs. On the back, Marvell Wynne struggled mightily against Montreal at center-back, so it’s possible Dom might move him back to right-back and place Andres Imperiale and Victor Bernardez as the two center-backs. With Jordan Stewart out (again, and possibly for good), Shaun Francis should get the start at left-back.
With Quincy out and the team playing at home, expect a few changes from Wednesday night’s lineup on the attack. Henok Goitom should get the start in place of Quincy at forward with Wondo. Newly minted father Simon Dawkins should also see the starting XI at left-wing. Quintero should start at right-wing.
It’s always a crap-shoot when Shaun Francis starts. Sometimes he’s great, other times he’s way out of position, which usually leads to quality scoring opportunities for opponents. If RSL starts their regular corps of attackers–Garcia, Morales, Allen, and Martinez–RSL should see one goal, possibly two. Also, it’s late in the season and we’re running center-backs who are 30 years old or over, so our defense may have lost some pep in their step. Yet another reason to expect two goals from RSL tonight.
Offensively, if the Quakes run the “ineffective” 4-4-2 as they’ve been doing, don’t expect a lot of goals. That said, with their back against the wall, and the fact that I’m HOPING they still have some life in them to try and get a win tonight, I’m betting the Quakes score two goals, with Goitom scoring one of them. Will it be enough? Probably not.
Final score prediction: 2-2