Sandy, UT – Real Salt Lake records their first loss of the season in what ended up being a very ugly last 15 minutes of the match. In his first appearance at the RioT and first time working with RSL, referee Ted Unkel made sure his presence was made known in the match as he ejects two RSL players and helps to pave the way to the match winning goal and three points for the Vancouver Whitecaps.
The Vancouver Whitecaps came into Rio Tinto Stadium tonight on a high, leading the Western Conference as well as all of Major League Soccer, while RSL is in fifth place in the West although they are still undefeated in MLS action with two wins and three draws. Both clubs came into the match Pedro Morales is out for Vancouver on a Red Card suspension and Javier Morales is out with a hamstring injury and shortly before the first kick Chris Schuler was replaced with Elias Vasquez in the lineup.
The first half of the match had a fairly quick pace, and it looks like RSL is getting more comfortable.the 4-3-3 formation. Jordan Allan had the only shot on goal in the first 45, and RSL had plenty of good chances, but the score was 0-0 at the intermission.
No changes were made for either club as they started the second half of play and RSL really looked to be more comfortable in the new 4-3-3 formation than they have all season. Sebastian Saucedo replaced Jordan Allen in the 64th minute and was helping to up the attack for RSL. This all changed in the 76th minute of play when Sebastian Saucedo was shown a red card for what was called a studs up challenge.
Just four minutes later Vancouver was able to capitalize on the man up advantage and a broken defensive play when he headed the ball past Nick Rimando for a goal. This goal ended the 264 minute since the last goal scored against Real Salt Lake.
The bad luck continued as RSL saw a second red card in the 89th minute when Jamison Olave received his second yellow card. This left RSL with 9 players on the pitch with Vancouver still at full strength.
RSL kept the pressure up and was able to threaten the goal several times before the final whistle blew with a score of 0-1 and the first loss of the season for Real.
Real Salt Lake (2-0-3): Nick Rimando; Tony Beltran (John Stertzer, 83′); Jámison Olave; Elias Vasquez; Demar Phillips; Kyle Beckerman; Luis Gil; Luke Mulholland (Devon Sandoval, 88′); Jordan Allen (Sebastian Saucedo, 64′); Álvaro Saborio; Olmes Garcia
Substitutes not used: Jeff Attinella; Abdoulie Mansally; Wellington Paeckart; Aaron Maund
Vancouver Whitecaps(4-2-1): David Ousted; Sam Adekugbe; Pa-Madou Kah; Kendall Waston; Steven Beitashour; Matias Laba; Russell Teibert; Gerson Koffie; Nicolas Mezquida (Mauro Rosales, 71); Octavio Rivero; Darren Mattocks
Substitutes not used: Paolo Tornaghi; Robert Earnshaw; Deybi Flores; Erik Hurtado; Kekuta Menneh; Cristian Techera
Quotes from Real Salt Lake
On the officiating:
“It is what it is. Sometimes, when you leave your feet like that, you leave yourself susceptible for the referee to make an impact in the way he did. So there are definitely coaching points there. This game isn’t about the officiating for sure.”
On scratching Chris Schuler from the lineup:
“He has a knee issue. He’s going to get some MRI’s tomorrow, so I don’t have any concrete answers for you, but it did happen during warm up.”
On Vancouver’s goal:
“It was really a broken play. We were actually in good spots. They went to cross the ball and Luke made a good effort to stop a penetrating ball. It goes off of his shin, down into the corner, and they get a cross. It was a bit of a broken play, maybe where we took a bit of a mental lapse. I have to go back and look at it, but we were all in good spots when the play happened, it was just that when it deflected off Luke, everything kind of went south from there.”
Up Next for Real Salt Lake:
Real Salt Lake travels to Gillette Stadium for a match against the New England Revolution on April 25th.