(July 5, 2021)Real San Jose has qualified for the 2021 National Soccer League Pacific Conference playoffs and will face top-seeded San Pablo FC this Sunday evening at MLK Park in Richmond. The kickoff is 7:00 PM. To get there, RSJ faced a pair of must-win situations. The first was June 27 at American Canyon, and the second was July 3 at NorCal Rush. The key to these victories was the awakening of the RSJ attack, which came up with ten goals over the two crucial road matches.
The win over American Canyon Rising saw RSJ miss several clear chances until Memo Plancarte hammered home a close-range shot about 20 minutes into the first half. Still, the misfiring continued, and frustration set in; then, against the run of play American Canyon tied the match shortly before halftime. Fortunately, RSJ responded with sharper shooting in the second half when Rodrigo Cardoza, Hoang Pham, and Ulrich Dingue scored to make the final score 4-2.
Against the Rush, RSJ jumped out to an early 2-0 lead behind goals from Didier Tanoh and Zak Epp but had to deal with unexcepted drama when going down a man when Cardoza received a straight red card in the 45th minute. RSJ started the second half prepared to be on the defensive in the second half, but a red card to a Rush player evened the player count and opened the door for more RSJ goals. Epp got a second goal, and Sergio Cermeno, Hector Herrera, and Aziel Suarez added once each.
RSJ has managed to right their ship winning three of four matches leading to the playoff match with San Pablo FC.