The San Jose Earthquakes settled for a tie with FC Dallas in a 2-2 road match which included bizarre ejections and a controversial penalty kick against the Quakes. San Jose staked an early lead when forward Alan Gordon right-footed a shot into the lower right corner of the net from a perfect feed from midfielder Cordell Cato into the center box. Cato streaked down the left side of the pitch before a center cross to Gordon who one-timed his shot past diving FC Dallas goalkeeper Raul Fernandez on the eighth minute.
Just eight minutes later, Gordon again figured in the Quakes’ next goal by laying off a pass to midfielder Rafael Baca, who lofted a chip pass to an onrushing Steven Beitashour. In turn, Beitashour soft-footed the ball by a sprawling Fernandez. The beautiful sequence of a one-time pass by Baca and Beitashour’s one-timer was emblematic of San Jose’s team play in the early going.
However, the tide of momentum turned quickly when Dallas retaliated on the 19th minute. Michel crossed to Je-Vaughn Watson, who sent a header to Blas Perez. Perez right-footed the ball past San Jose goalkeeper Jon Busch into the center of the net, as Busch was caught out of position. The partisan crowd at FC Dallas Stadium in Frisco, TX woke up from their silence, as they sensed the home team was making a comeback.
The first half ended with San Jose hanging on to a 2-1 lead.
The controversy started at the 69th minute when Perez drew a foul from San Jose’s Victor Bernardez in the penalty area, despite what appeared to be minimal contact. On the disputed call, Dallas received a penalty kick, which was converted by Michel to tie the match at 2-2. Michel sent the liner to the left of the net, while Busch dove right.
Despite being a well-played matchup until then, from that point forward, play became more physical. San Jose’s Justin Morrow received a red card and an ejection at the 81st minute after a hard tackle on Ramon Nunez.
On the 86th minute, another bizarre sequence occurred when Bernardez made a hard tackle on Kenny Cooper. Cooper retaliated and shoved Bernardez to the ground. Cooper received a red card, but so did Bernardez, which ignited protestations from the San Jose side. The ejections still left San Jose playing a man down. San Jose played the rest of the match conservatively, content with a tie on the road in the sweltering 92 degree heat.
Next up for San Jose are the LA Galaxy at the StubHub Center on August 31.