Victor Bernardez’s Miracle Strike Gives San Jose Lead
It was an absolute dream strike from the most unlikely of players in the 94′ minute.
The San Jose Earthquakes and Los Angeles Galaxy had played an extremely competitive match, with L.A. dominating the second period at home. But a late set piece at distance in front of goal gave Victor Bernardez the chance of a lifetime to capitalize, and he did so.
With his goal in the 94′ minute, the Earthquakes team who looked to be heading back to Buck Shaw Stadium in San Jose tied on aggregate are now the aggressor.
Los Angeles’ Robbie Keane had one of the best opportunities of the game to score when his deflection met the crossbar in the 86′ minute off of a cross from Landon Donovan. At that point in the match, it was the closest either team had come to scoring.
The ball slipped in through the wall of Los Angeles’ Omar Gonzalez and Tommy Meyer before hitting keeper Josh Saunders and subsequently going underneath his diving effort in the dying embers of the game on Sunday night.
Los Angeles will now head to Buck Shaw Stadium in San Jose trailing 1-0 after they though they had a tied sewn up. Counting all four matches they’ve played in 2012, Los Angeles are now 0-3-1 against San Jose.
The second leg of the semi-final playoff round will be seen nationally on ESPN2 in the United States at 11:00 EST, 8:00 PST on Wednesday November 7. The match result has come as a surprise to many San Jose fans, but will be met with intensity as San Jose were the best team in MLS this season.