Only in Preki’s world can you score a club-record seven goals in a match and still be upset about the performance of your team.
But that was exactly the scene at Bonney Field as the Sacramento Republic FC coach bashed his team’s effort in a five-minute post game rant despite a 7-3 Third Round US Open Cup win over USASA side Chula Vista FC.
“Some moments it was good, some moments it was not good enough fore me. We scored seven goals, but to give up three goals, that’s incredibly disappointing for me,” he said. “Some of the guys aren’t working hard enough for the team and guess what’s going to happen? They’re not going to be here. I don’t really care who the names are, who they are, they don’t work hard for the team, they aren’t going to be here. Simple as that.
“The game should have been finished in the first half, four, five to zero, four, five to one, or whatever with the penalty. But I said, keep it going, things will open up, and they did. They did,” he added. “Now, this is the second time in Open Cup play this has happened to us. In the [second round], same thing. We took a 4-1 lead and then we almost threw the game away because of silliness, because of us being casual, because now we think we’ve arrived. That’s not the way we want to do things here.”
Playing against the dangerous Chula Vista, who flattened fellow USL side Arizona United SC 3-0 in the Second Round, the Republic could not have gotten off to a better start, scoring via a rocket header from Octavio Guzman in just the 9th minute of the match off of a free kick from Max Alvarez.
Five minutes before halftime, the visitors leveled the score after a controversial foul in the box allowed Francisco Ramirez to coolly slot home a penalty.
Republic striker Adnan Gabeljic, who would end up with a hat trick, took just three minutes to respond, blasting home a 20-yard shot in the 43rd minute.
The crowd of 10,018 must have thought that it would be smooth sailing from there on out when Tommy Stewart scored his competition-leading fourth goal of the tournament seven minutes into the second half, and though Gabeljic and Zev Taublieb quickly tallied two more, the Republic were not out of the woods yet.
Just 35 seconds after taking a 5-1 lead, the Republic gave up a goal when Alberto Diaz found a streaking Joey Estrada, who chipped the ball home.
Diaz set up Mario Rubio’s 81st minute strike to pull within two goals, but the Republic pulled the lead back to four with Rodrigo Lopez’s first goal of the competition was followed by the completion of Gabeljic’s hat trick.
Chula Vista goalkeeper Sebastian Ortiz, who made several spectacular saves in the upset against Arizona, again had a good game, registering eight saves, including a save on a penalty against Lopez in the second half.
The Republic move on to play MLS affiliate San Jose Earthquakes in the Fourth Round at Avaya Stadium.
There are currently zero San Jose players on loan in Sacramento, and there haven’t been any all year.
Sacramento are now 4-0 all time in Open Cup play at home, with 19 goals scored and just six allowed.
Evan Ream covers Sacramento Republic FC for the Davis Enterprise. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter @EvanReam
HIGHLIGHTS: Chula Vista at Sacremento Republic
FULL MATCH REPLAY: Chula Vista at Sacremento Republic
Chula Vista FC
40' · Francis Ramirez (PK)  74' · Joey Estrada (Alberto Diaz)  8' · Mario Rubio (Alberto Diaz)