The Earthquakes, carrying a reputation from 2010 as a solidroad team down the stretch, could not live up to that status as they fell 2-1at the Houston Dynamo. Despite taking the lead in the first half through KhariStephenson, defensive mistakes in the second half consigned the team to adefeat that has all but mathematically extinguished their slim playoff chances.The result left San Jose 16th out of 18 in theoverall table (with the top 10 teams making the postseason) and seven pointsaway from a playoff berth. With four of its final six games on the road and ahost of teams contending for a spot, it would take a marathon effort for theteam to turn things around and qualify for the playoffs. San Jose took a 1-0 lead into halftime after KhariStephenson finished off a well-worked counterattack with an emphatic volley.However, the Earthquakes were on the back foot for most of the first half, atrend that continued as Houston clawed two back in the second half, San Josewilting in the 81-degree heat combined with 85 humidity. Despite taking eight shots, only three fewer than theDynamo, the Earthquakes managed to put two on goal, an inefficient use of theirchances considering Houston had a 57.3-42.7 advantage in possession.Playing up top instead of at his natural centralmidfield position, Khari Stephenson was one of the Earthquakes most dangerousplayers on the night, getting the teams other shot on target in addition tohis goal. However, the Jamaican did miss a particularly glaring chance in the71st minute, failing to put his shot on frame after getting inbehind thanks to a defensive miscue from Houston. I scored a goal tonight, and I probably should have had twomore, Stephenson said of his play. Then again, it is not my position, but Ifeel as if I have the qualities and I should be able to put away thosechances. Head coach Frank Yallop also lamented the teams inabilityto convert its chances into goals, indicating he would continue to search forthe right formula up top with increasingly little left to play for. We had enough chances to score more than one goal. Thatsthe disappointing part forme, he said.We are trying our best to put it right and do our best to address everythingwhen we play games and come out next time and do better. The inefficient use of possession could have been overcomewith solid defending, and despite a spirited effort in the back overall, twomistakes caused two goals. First, Bobby Burling caught the foot of Brad Daviswhile the Houston midfielder was cutting into the area, leading to a penaltykick that Davis converted himself. In the second instance, Steven Beitashourlost his mark on Houstons Will Bruin, allowing Luis Camargo to float in across that Bruin easily volleyed home. Last year we found a way to win these games. This year weare shooting ourselves in the foot a bit, Earthquakes forward ChrisWondolowski said. We are making a couple of mistakes and getting punished forthem and not finishing when we should. Wondolowski took just two shots throughout the game, as hewas effectively isolated by the Houston defense. One chance was particularlydangerous Wondolowski received the ball at his feet at close range after somedazzling individual work from Simon Dawkins, but he could not get his footaround the ball, putting it harmlessly wide. Houston did a great job tonight, and they have a greatdefense, Wondolowski added. We didnt create a whole lot of opportunities,and the ones that I did get on the end of I didnt do a good enough job ofconverting. Although not mathematically eliminated, the Earthquakes willbe up against it, their road trip set to continue for two more games. The teamfirst travels to Portland on Wednesday evening before visiting Colorado thefollowing Saturday, and while the playoffs may be almost out of reach, thegames should provide a good test for those looking to retain their spot on theroster in 2012.For more Earthquakes, MLS and world soccer musings,you can follow Nick Rosano on Twitter: @nicholasrosano
The San Jose Earthquakes announced today that the club has acquired Dutch forward Danny Hoesen on a season-long loan, with an option to buy, using Targeted Allocation Money and signed German defender/midfielder Florian Jungwirth using Targeted Allocation Money, pending receipt of P-1 Visas and ITC.
Hoesen, 26, most recently played for FC Groningen of the Dutch Eredivisie. Since joining FC Groningen ahead of the 2014-15 season, Hoesen has tallied 15 goals and five assists in 72 appearances, including four goals in 12 matches so far this season. He helped the club win the 2014-15 KNVB Cup, the Dutch version of the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup.
"Danny Hoesen gives us a player with a strong frame that is tall, but also has a fast pace," said Earthquakes general manager Jesse Fioranelli. "He can attack the space in counter-attack situations. He can also work in tandem with whichever striker will be supporting him. He's a player that comes from very attack-minded football in Holland and will be the perfect striker to give us an additional element in the box that we may have been missing."
Hoesen began his professional career with Fortuna Sittard of the Dutch second division, before joining English side Fulham FC in 2008 at the age of 17. Playing with Fulham's U-23 side, Hoesen spent time on loan with HJK Helsinki of the Finnish first division in 2010, helping the club win the league title, and later his former club Fortuna Sittard (2011-12) before returning to England in June of 2012. He scored four goals in 10 total appearances for Fulham's youth side.
In August of 2012, Hoesen was transferred to Dutch powerhouse Ajax. Over the next season and a half, Hoesen scored 13 goals and added six assists in 44 appearances across all competitions for the first team, while also scoring eight goals in 22 appearances for the club's U-21 squad. He helped Ajax win the 2012-13 league title and the 2013 Johan Cruyff Shield. Hoesen also appeared in five UEFA Champions League matches against Real Madrid, Borussia Dortmund, FC Barcelona and AC Milan, scoring goals against Dortmund and Barcelona.
He then joined Greek first division side PAOK Thessaloniki on loan in January of 2014 and finished the season with one goal and two assists. Hoesen was then transferred from Ajax to FC Groningen in July of 2014 where he remained until signing with San Jose.
Internationally, Hoesen has made 13 total appearances for the Netherlands at various youth levels, scoring three goals.
Jungwirth, 28, joins the Earthquakes after two and a half seasons with SV Darmstadt 98 of the German Bundesliga. He made 63 appearances for Darmstadt, recording three assists, and helped the club earn promotion from the 2. Bundesliga to the top flight with a second place finish in 2014-15.
"Florian is capable of playing all defensive positions. He came up through the German National Team system and won the European Cup with them," said Fioranelli. "He grew up as a central defender, on both the right and the left. He was later moved to defensive midfield because he is a player that has a strong presence and is very logical and careful when it comes to possession and build-up situations. He is a player that has a lot of heart and has been very much liked on every team that he's played for because he will fight for his teammates and is a natural leader."
Jungwirth began his career at the youth ranks of TSV 1860 Munich. After making 33 appearances for the club's U-19 side, he earned his way onto the club's reserve squad, TSV 1860 Munich II, where he tallied three assists in 48 games played.
In January of 2010, he was transferred to Dynamo Dresden of the 2. Bundesliga, where he remained for three and a half seasons. During his time with Dresden, Jungwirth made 97 appearances and recorded two assists.
Ahead of the 2013-14 season, Jungwirth moved to VfL Bochum, also of the 2. Bundesliga. During his one season with the club, he scored one goal in 30 appearances with the first team and two goals in four appearances with the club's reserve side. Jungwirth then signed with Darmstadt in September of 2014.
Internationally, Jungwirth has made 44 appearances for Germany at various youth levels from U-16 to U-20, scoring two goals.
"I think both guys have a strong background coming from top leagues overseas and will help on both sides of the ball," said Earthquakes head coach Dominic Kinnear. "Our expectation is that Danny will score goals and Florian will provide a solid presence on the backline."
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MIAMI BEACH, Fla. — This year's CONCACAF Gold Cup final will be played on July 26 at Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara, California.
The Confederation of North, Central America and Caribbean Association Football announced first-round sites in December and the site of the final on Wednesday. The 12-nation tournament opens July 7 at Harrison, New Jersey.
The United States and defending champion Mexico head a field that includes Canada, Costa Rica, Curacao, El Salvador, French Guyana, Honduras, Jamaica, Martinique and Panama. The final spot will be determined by a playoff between Haiti and Nicaragua in March.