Real Salt Lake (4-2-3-1): Nick Rimando; Chris Wingert, Chris Schuler, Nat Borchers, Tony Beltran; Yordany Alvarez (Robbie Findley, 57'), Kyle Beckerman (C), Luis Gil, Javier Morales, Ned Grabavoy (Sebastian Velasquez, 61'); Alvaro Saborio (Devon Sandoval, 79')
Bench: Jeff Attinella, Abdoulie Mansally, Carlos Salcedo, Cole Grossman
LA Galaxy (4-4-2): Jaime Penedo; Sean Franklin, Omar Gonzalez, Kofi Opare, Todd Dunivant; Robbie Rogers (Hector Jimenez, 61'), Juninho (A.J. DeLaGarza, 90’+1’), Marcelo Sarvas (Rafael Garcia, 83'), Gyasi Zardes; Landon Donovan, Robbie Keane (C)
Bench: Brian Rowe, Leonardo, A.J. DeLaGarza, Laurent Courtois, Jose Villarreal
CARSON, Calif. – Real Salt Lake dropped the first leg of its Western Conference Semifinal series with the LA Galaxy on Sunday night, conceding early in the second half to fall 1-0 to the defending MLS Cup champions in front of a sold-out StubHub Center.
DF Sean Franklin scored the game’s lone goal in the 47th minute, running onto a loose ball in the middle of RSL’s third and blasting a gorgeous first-time effort into the back of the net from 35 yards out.
RSL now must win the series’ decisive second leg on Thursday at Rio Tinto Stadium in order to have a shot at advancing to the Western Conference Final. If the teams are tied on aggregate at the end of regulation in Thursday’s second leg, there will be a pair of 15-minute extra time periods. If the teams remain tied following extra time, the series will be decided by a penalty kick shootout.
Real Salt Lake
Real Salt Lake Head Coach Jason Kreis
On what impressed him about LA’s performance:
“I think they were good certainly in the 50/50 challenges but I don’t think that we made them defend enough, we weren’t good enough with the ball. We gave the ball away so cheaply, so many times in very dangerous spots and so even the goal comes from our giving the ball away in our defensive third of the field on just an easy pass that’s just missed. So we can talk all we want about how we have to be better defensively but for me, we wouldn’t have to defend as much if we were much better with the ball.”
On what the team needs to do differently to overcome the deficit:
“We just need to play better, that’s it. The passes are there, you can see that the options were there, we’re just missing simple passes so some of our most important players need to play better, and they will.”