Real Salt Lake continues to feel the effect of being shorthanded as they drop another match. This is only the second time that Portland has bested RSL and they did it with a 3-1 win over the Claret and Cobalt in front of a sold out crowd at the RIOT.
RSL started the match off in the fashion that we have come to expect when playing here at Rio Tinto Stadium, looking to control the style and tempo of the match. This was the theme for most of the first half. RSL had a number of good opportunities and in 23rd minute Luke Mulholland got one in the net after a corner kick by Javier Morales to put RSL on top 1-0.
Things got a little scary in the 26th minute when Jeff Attinella was left on the ground after an injury, luckily he was able to recover quickly and stay in the match. Olmes Garcia had a great shot in the 29th minute, but Ricketts was able to stop it, and then in the 36th minute of play Portland tied up the match on a Fanendo Adi goal with an assist from Diego Valeri. In the 45th minute Adi found the back of the net for again for the go ahead goal, putting RSL behind only for the 4th time this season.
The match really turned in the second half when Tony Beltran was issued a yellow card in the 53rd minute and again the 54th minute to be ejected from the match. After going down to 10 men, RSL just couldn’t get their momentum back and Portland sealed the match when Chris Schuler was called for a hand ball in the penalty area and Will Johnson converted the PK.
On a positive note, we saw Joao Plata return to the pitch tonight as he continues to heal from his latest injury. Plata started tonight until he was replaced by Kenny Mansally in the 58th minute. Attinella continues to contribute to the team effort as he blocked two shots tonight and had saves worthy of “Save of the Week” again.
Real Salt Lake (6-2-7) travels to Atlanta Silverbacks Park for their opening Open Cup match against the Atlanta Silverbacks on June 14th. The next MLS match is against Chivas USA (2-7-4) June 28th at the StubHub Center.