Rio Tinto Stadium, Sandy, UT – It was a perfect night for soccer, well perfect for everything but the prowess of LAFC as they showed their overall roster strength against RSL. You can’t say the home club didn’t put in a great effort drawing even to Acosta’s first goal with a shot from Sergio Garcia however the rest of the scoring was on the wrong side of the pitch.
The energy on the pitch was almost as high as the humidity in Salt Lake City tonight and it didn’t let up all night. LAFC was first to score with a back kick from Cristian Arango in just the 9th minute of the match. RSL looked like they might be up to the challenge when Sergio Cordova put one away in the 12th minute. LA answered a short time later when Jasper Loffelsend lost track of the bounce and Kellyn Acosta doubled his clubs lead. The Claret and Cobalt had their chances to score again before the end of the half with the best chances coming off a cross from Andrew Brody to a waiting Jefferson Savarino but the 10 yard shot was blocked. Anderson Julio had a chance in the 43rd minute with a header that missed the mark. Only down one goal at the half it still felt like we were in it and hadn’t lost any momentum.
With no substitutions made a the half things picked up right where they had left off. RSL had several chances and kept up the high energy even when Cristian Arango found the net for the second time in the match in the 60th minute. The most stunning event of the night might have been from Gorgio Cheillini who had Cordova breathing down his neck and as the last defender he chose to put up his arms and smother the ball. Even though RSL thought the play warranted a red card, Cheillini was given a yellow and play continued. The final score of the match was from Gareth Bale as he streaked down the right side and evaded multiple defenders and Zac MacMath to give us the final score.
Tonight saw a record crowd tonight at the Riot with 21,810 fans watching Gareth Bale visit the RioT for the first time ever. It seemed that Real just couldn’t complete with the all-star roster that LAFC has assembled. Real Salt Lake makes a trip to the Emerald City as they take on the Seattle Sounders on Sunday, August 14th.
Goals by Period 1 2 F
Real Salt Lake 1 0 1
LAFC 2 2 4
LAFC – Cristian Arango – 9′
RSL – Sergio Cordova – 12′
LAFC – Kellyn Acosta – 17′
LAFC – Cristian Arango – 60′
LAFC – Gareth Bale – 83′
LAFC – Kellyn Acosta – 40′ – unsporting behavior
LAFC – Giorgio Chiellini – 69′ – handball
Referee: Victor Rivas
Assistant Referee: Jeffrey Greeson
Assistant Referee: Kevin Lock
4th Official: Silviu Petrescu
Video Assistant Referee: Ismail Elfath
AVAR: Jonathan Johnson
Real Salt Lake: Zac MacMath; Aaron Herrera; Justen Glad; Marcelo Sila; Andrew Brody; Pablo Ruiz; Jasper Loffelsend (Deigo Luna, 79′); Jefferson Savarino; Sergio Cordova; Justin Meram (Maikel Chang, 79′); Anderson Julio (Rubio Rubin, 66′)
Substitutes Not Used: Tomas Gomez; Scott Caldwell; Nick Besler; Erik Holt; Bode Hidalgo
LAFC: Maxime Crepaeu (Sebastian Mendez, 64′); Franco Escobar (Ryan Hollingshead, 86′); Jesus Murillo; Giogio Chielini (Eddie Segura, 72); Ilie Sanchez; Carlos Vela (Gareth Bale, 64′); Diego Palacios; Jose Cifuentes ; Kellyn Acosta; Cristian Arango; Kwadwo Opaku (Brian Rodriguez, 64′)
Substitutes Not Used: Mamadou Fall; Latif Blessing; Stebastian Ibeagha; John McCarthy