SAN JOSE, CALIF. (October 25, 2018) – For the first time in Major League Soccer history, a team will finish 23rd in the Supporters’ Shield standings. With the results over the weekend, the San Jose Earthquakes will finish last in league play this year and will be ‘awarded’ the 2018 MLS Wooden Spoon.
San Jose Earthquakes ‘win’ 2018 MLS Wooden Spoon
The Wooden Spoon has been a satirical trophy/title often given to a loser or the last place finisher in a competition. In 2015, the Independent Supporter’s Council of MLS decided to make a trophy for this ignominious distinction and award it to the supporter’s group of the club that finishes last in the Supporters’ Shield (full league table) race.
The first two years, the trophy went to the Chicago Fire. The 2017 ‘champions’ and current keepers of the trophy are the LA Galaxy and the Angel City Brigade.
As early as two weeks ago, three teams were still in the running for the spoon. Colorado Rapids getting a road win at Minnesota and Orlando City SC beating Columbus (their first win in months), eliminated them from contention. Before the Quakes and Rapids kicked off, in what was the most irrelevant and unexciting game of the penultimate weekend of league play, the Quakes had it in the bag.
It’s been a miserable year for Quakes supporters. Jesse Fioranelli’s moves didn’t pan out early in the season. Under first-year head coach, Mikael Stahre, the team couldn’t find a consistent formation or playing style. Players started speaking out in the media. There were post-game huddles with harsh words and infighting. Fatai Alashe stood up to the shenanigans and was promptly traded.
The team lost, a lot. They blew leads. The fell into and stayed in last place. The transfer window moves didn’t work out. The only real constantly good narrative in this year was Chris Wondolowski’s march towards Landon Donovan’s all-time goal record. He’s just one goal away from tying and setting/breaking that record at Seattle Sounders FC would be one silver lining of 2018.
San Jose will turn their focus to 2019 after Sunday as former Chivas and River Plate manager Matias Almeyda will take over as manager, signaling a new era in spending and international signings for the club.