Three MLS regular season and two CONCACAF Champions League matches into the 2014 campaign can provide a reasonable sample to evaluate the current path of the San Jose Earthquakes.
FACT -- No wins in five matches
FACT -- Only one game with more than a single goal scored.
FACT -- The Earthquakes are at the bottom of the conference standings.
[RELATED: MLS standings]
Still, there is reason to be optimistic. John Busch is still an amazing goalkeeper. He has kept the Quakes in every game and is consistent, acrobatic when he needs to be and aggressive when the situation calls for it.
Another plus is new acquisition Yannick Djalo. When he entered his first match last Saturday, the first thing I noticed was how tiny he is. At 5-foot-6 and 140 pounds, all I could think is a guy that small had better be quick. Djalo showed right away he adds a dimension of skill with the ball that has been sorely lacking since Simon Dawkins wore the Quakes colors. Matched with Cordell Cato, who was moved to right back upon Djalo’s entry to the game, the duo proved electric and created a lot of space as defenders worried about getting beat with their speed.
Djalo is on loan from SL Benefica in Portugal’s Ligue 1. It’s unknown how long he’ll be with the team, or at his size, how durable he will be. But if Djalo can stay healthy, fasten your seat belts because he appears to be capable of creating a lot of havoc for opponents.