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The San Jose Earthquakes in a Word: Resourceful

MLS's comeback kids haven't lost much talent from their inspired 2012 campaign, but the rest of the teams in the Western Conference are improved. Can the Earthquakes hang on to the top spot?
BY Matt Thacker Posted
March 05, 2013
5:13 PM
The San Jose Earthquakes have done more with less than any team in Major League Soccer. Until a few days ago when 2012 MLS MVP Chris Wondolowski signed a new deal, the Earthquakes were one of only two teams without a designated player. Financial restraints did not stop San Jose from being far and away the best team during the regular season last year. The Earthquakes led the league with 72 goals with 50 of them coming from Wondolowski, Alan Gordon, and Steven Lenhart. That’s remarkable considering Wondolowski had four goals in as many seasons before arriving in San Jose in 2009, while Gordon and Lenhart were considered role players at best before last year’s breakthrough. With the exception of Simon Dawkins, the Earthquakes kept most of the key players from last year. Marvin Chávez and Shea Salinas will continue to provide service, while the defense remains strong.The big question is how the Earthquakes respond to having a target on their backs rather than flying under the radar as they did last year. There is no guarantee the late-game heroics will continue this year.

EXPECTED FINISH: 3rd in the Western Conference. Other teams have improved and will be more prepared for San Jose this year.

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