RSL Falls to Houston 1-0

Jeff Attinella

Jeff Attinella comes out strong to protect his turf

HOUSTON (Sunday, May 15, 2016) – Real Salt Lake suffered its second straight 1-0 road loss on Sunday, falling to the Houston Dynamo at BBVA Compass Stadium.  GK Jeff Attinella made two saves, but a second-half goal from Giles Barnes was the difference in the match as RSL fell to 5-3-2.

The match was originally slated to kick off at 6:30 p.m. MT on Saturday, but was delayed then postponed until noon MT on Sunday when lightning storms peppered the Houston area.

Joao Plata back from injury

Joao Plata back from injury – Photo Rob Gray

The first near-miss of the match came in the 10th minute when FW Joao Plata bent a corner kick in from the left side, nearly scoring directly off the corner kick if not for Joe Willis snatching the ball just before it cleared the goal line.

In the 40th minute, Erick Torres nearly got Houston on the board after an RSL turnover in the midfield.  In a quick transition, DaMarcus Beasley charged up the left and crossed it for Torres, who bounced a header off the grass inside the six-yard box, but sprung it over the top of the crossbar and the match remained scoreless.

RSL outshot Houston 5-4 in the first half, but neither team was able to break through for the early lead.

RSL vs Houston

RSL vs Houston – Photo Rob Gray

Then the Dynamo opened the second half on the attack.

Within the first 10 minutes, Houston already surpassed the four shots attempted in the first half, testing Attinella with seven shots in that stretch.

In the 48th minute, Giles Barnes got free up the middle and Attinella met him just inside the box blocking his shot attempt with a sliding effort.  Torres got to the deflection, but put his shot wide.  The next series of opportunities came off of Dynamo corner kicks, with Cristian Maidana pumping left-footed balls into dangerous areas.  David Horst hit the crossbar in the 52nd minute, then Torres and Ricardo Clark had a total of three shots blocked over a one-minute span and the match remained level.

Juan Manuel Martinez

Juan Manuel Martinez – Photo Rob Gray

Plata appeared to give RSL the lead in the 64th minute when he got into the box and put a ball past Willis.  FW Juan Manuel Martinez battled for possession 22 yards from goal and poked it forward for Plata for a clean look on goal and he put it into the net, but referee Juan Guzman whistled the foul on Martinez and waved off the apparent goal.

One minute later, FW Yura Movsisyan had a chance as well, as MF John Stertzer played him in behind the defense.  Movsisyan’s first touch eluded him, though, forcing him into a hurried shot over the oncoming Willis that missed high.

On the ensuing goalkick, the Dynamo capitalized.

Houston took the lead in the 65th minute when Willis looped the ball over the top, bouncing between players twice before Barnes sprung onto it, got behind the defense and beat Attinella 1v1 for his fourth goal of the season to put RSL in a 1-0 hole.

Real Salt Lake pressed for the equalizer, but couldn’t register another shot and the goal from Barnes held up as RSL fell 1-0.

Salt Lake will continue its stretch of five consecutive road matches while the field at Rio Tinto Stadium is replaced, visiting Sporting Kansas City for the second time this season on Saturday at Children’s Mercy Park.  RSL won the previous meeting 2-1 on April 2.

GAME NOTES – HOUvRSL
– The match ended a five-game winning streak for RSL over the Houston Dynamo.
– The match was originally scheduled for Saturday evening, but extreme weather caused for a delay, then postponement as lightning storms scattered the area.  This match was the second postponement in RSL history.  The first came in 2011 against Vancouver Whitecaps FC when the field flooded at Empire Field.  The match was later rescheduled and played at BC Place.
– GK Jeff Attinella started in place of GK Nick Rimando as part of a scheduled rotation.  It was Attinella’s second start of the season after starting April 2 in a 2-1 win over Sporting Kansas City.
– DF Aaron Maund and DF Demar Phillips were both out of action due to injury.

HOUSTON DYNAMO 1-0 REAL SALT LAKE
SUNDAY, MAY 15, 2016
BBVA COMPASS STADIUM

Goals by Period                    1          2          F
Real Salt Lake                        0          0          0
Houston Dynamo                    0          1          1

Scoring Summary:

HOU: Giles Barnes (Joe Willis) 65’

Misconduct Summary:

HOU: Alex (Caution; Foul) 31’
RSL: Tony Beltran (Caution; Foul) 81’

Lineups:
Real Salt Lake (4-2-3-1): Jeff Attinella; Tony Beltran, Justen Glad, Jamison Olave, Chris Wingert (Jordan Allen 75’); Kyle Beckerman, John Stertzer (Luke Mulholland 74’); Juan Manuel Martinez (Olmes Garcia 82’), Javier Morales, Joao Plata; Yura Movsisyan.
Substitutes not used: Nick Rimando, Phanuel Kavita, Devon Sandoval, Sunday Stephen.

Houston Dynamo (4-2-3-1): Joe Willis; Sheanon Williams, David Horst, Agus, DaMarcus Beasley; Ricardo Clark, Alex; Andrew Wenger (Leonel Miranda 66’), Cristian Maidana, Giles Barnes (Will Bruin 93+’); Erick Torres (Boniek Garcia 77’).
Substitutes not used: Calle Brown, Jalil Anibaba, David Rocha, Collen Warner.

Referee: Juan Guzman

Assistant Referees: Eric Boria, Adam Garner
Fourth Official: Younes Marrakchi
Attendance: 17,943
Weather: Cloudy and 81

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