Solid 3:1 stomping of San Jose starts season
February 26, 2022

1:3
San Jose New York
Lopez Klimala
Fernandez
Barlow
02.26.22 · League

Three days ago, Gerhard Struber voiced correct concerns about the makeup of the team. One day ago, Kevin Thelwell cowardly hid his tail between his legs and jettisoned to Everton. Today... a makeshift Metro team completely dominated San Jose 3:1 to open the season. Raise your hand if you saw this coming. Struber definitely didn't!

Now, before we get to praising Metro, let's say that San Jose is absolutely terrible, with a lame duck manager who might be begging to get fired. That being said, Metro dominated on the road, with the three goals dwarfed by the number of quality opportunities. Hell, even Tom Barlow scored! We'll get to that.

Struber went with three central backs, with Dylan Nealis slotting in an unfamiliar role next to brother Sean and Aaron Long. John Tolkin and Lewis Morgan started at wingback, with Frankie Amaya, Dru Yearwood, Cristian Casseres, and Omir Fernandez in midfield. Patryk Klimala started up front, but that should be obvious, as there really is no other choice. Thanks, Kevin!

After Klimala whiffed early, and Tolkin blew what looked to be a sure goal high, we thought it might be same old. But a minute into first half injury time, Yearwood forced a turnover, and gave the ball to Fernandez, who in turn found Morgan. The Scotsman (already passing Peter Canero as the best Scotsman in team history) sent a low cross from the endline to Klimala at the goal's doorstep. The Pole miss-hit it off his left leg and in to the short side. Hey, they all count.

More chances were blown in the second, with Fernandez's and Clark's first touches failing in golden opportunities. Then, in the 69th, the Quakes leveled off a short free kick, as a header beat Carlos Coronel. Thankfully, the tie lasted only three minutes. This time, it was Amaya with a midfield steal. He then found Fernandez, who took it into the box and took a shot which was bound to be saved... only for it to go between the legs of the dumbfounded San Jose goalkeeper JT Marcinkowski. And that was all Metro needed.

But that was not all Metro got, because, as we said above... Tom Barlow scored! The "Big, Strong, Fast" striker matched his entire output of the 2021 season after being set up with by a nice ball by Clark in injury time. Marcinkowski got his hand on it, but could not keep it out.

The makeshift defense had no problems with the Quakes' feeble attack, as Long looked strong in his first game back. Even academy youngsters Daniel Edelman and Serge Ngoma got on the fun, tasting their first senior action with important minutes down the stretch.

Can Metro keep it up against better teams until the reinforcements come? Will the reinforcements come? Thanks, Kevin...

Lineup: Coronel, Tolkin, Nealis, Long, Nealis, Morgan, Amaya, Yearwood, Casseres, Fernandez, Klimala. Subs: Clark, Edelman, Ngoma, Barlow.

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