Notes & Quotes - COL 2 : 2 RSL

10-25-10@COL_fansgonuts (620x350)

Photo Credit: 
Marc Piscotty / Getty Images

LATE SABORÍO BRACE GIVES RSL 2-2 DRAW AT
RAPIDS, KEEPS SUPPORTERS SHIELD HOPES ALIVE
 

Costa Rican
International Scores in 91+’ & 95+’ to Draw RSL Even with L.A. Galaxy atop
MLS Standings;

Opponent Still
up in the Air for Upcoming Western Conference Semifinal Series

 

COMMERCE CITY, Colo. (Saturday, October 23,
2010)
Real Salt Lake saw its hopes
for a first-ever MLS Supporters’ Shield title stay alive tonight at Dick’s
Sporting Goods Park thanks to some late-game heroics by FW Álvaro Saborío,
his brace in second half stoppage time salvaging a 2-2 draw for the
defending MLS Cup champs.

 

With tonight’s crucial standings point, Real Salt Lake (15-4-11,
56 pts.)
once again drew even with the Los Angeles Galaxy for the League’s
top overall spot, meaning an FC Dallas win tomorrow evening over the Galaxy at
The Home Depot Center (6:00 p.m. MT kickoff) would give the Utah side the
regular season Supporters’ Shield crown courtesy of the second tie-breaker of
overall goal differential (teams are even on first, head-to-head points
tie-breaker).

 

Another unknown heading into tomorrow’s ultimate contest
of the MLS regular season in Carson, Calif., is who Real Salt Lake will square
off against in its upcoming Western Conference Semifinal Series that
will kick off the 2010 MLS Cup Playoffs. A Galaxy loss tomorrow evening
would give RSL the #1 seed and set up a marquee match-up against #4 Seattle
Sounders FC, while a Galaxy win or draw puts RSL in with the #2 seed, thereby
opening its title defense with another tough draw against #3 FC Dallas. The
only thing about the series that is known is that Real Salt Lake will host the
second leg of the series at Rio Tinto Stadium on Saturday, November 6 (time
TBA); the date and time of Leg 1 of the series will be announced by Real Salt
Lake and MLS on Sunday evening following the Galaxy-FC Dallas showdown.

 

Colorado would shoot out of the gates in tonight’s
contest, and it took just 16 minutes for Rapids FW Omar Cummings to move
the scoreboard, his one-touch redirect off a cross from the left by DF Anthony
Wallace
putting the home side up early. Not to be outdone by his
strike-mate, FW Conor Casey added one of his own six minutes after the
halftime break, his close-range header off a DF Kosuke Kimura cross
seemingly wrapping up the result for the Rapids, especially as the half wore on
and the visitors began to run out of time.

 

Despite struggling through one of its more disjointed
efforts of the season, Real Salt Lake would be rewarded for playing the full 90
minutes thanks to the hustle of Saborío, who blocked GK Matt Pickens’
clearance at the beginning of stoppage time, the ball bouncing off the striker
and then the crossbar before the Costa Rican slammed home the rebound to give
the road side hope. Two minutes later, DF Jamison Olave was hauled down
in the area by Rapids MF Brian Mullan as he tried to reach MF Javier
Morales’
free kick as it looped towards the penalty spot. That’s where
referee Ricardo Salazar pointed, and Saborío would make no mistake from there,
placing his shot inside the right post and past Pickens to send the hundreds of
Claret-and-Cobalt supporters in attendance into frenzy.


Real
Salt Lake Match Notes
 

  • Tonight’s draw kept a pair of streaks alive for Real Salt
    Lake, most notably the club-record 14-match undefeated streak in League
    play
    (6-0-8) the Utah side began with a 1-1 draw with Chivas USA back
    on July 24 at Rio Tinto Stadium (previous loss was 0-2 defeat at FC Dallas
    on July 17). Thanks to tonight’s last-second tie, Real Salt Lake responded
    to a 1-3-1 start to the campaign by closing with just a single loss across
    its final 25 contests (14-1-10).

 

  • Also continuing tonight was RSL’s grip on the Rocky
    Mountain Cup
    , with the pair of draws in this year’s home-and-away
    series allowing Real Salt Lake to claim the trophy for its supporters for
    a fourth straight year, this marking the third-year of retention following
    an even series after the Utahans won it outright for the first time in
    2007.

 

  • Despite the rare pair of goals given up, Real Salt Lake
    still easily managed to finish the campaign with the best defensive
    effort in MLS regular season history, its 20 goals allowed besting the
    2007 Houston Dynamo’s record of 23
    . Tonight marked only the second
    time in RSL’s last 26 contests in which it had allowed multiple goals (5th
    time this season).

 

  • A large part of that record was due to RSL’s stout
    defensive play on the road, its 13 away goals allowed falling just
    one shy of equaling the MLS record of 12 set by D.C. United during its
    2005 campaign.

 

  • In addition to those League-wide records, Real Salt
    Lake also bested or evened numerous club records in 2010, finishing
    the season with 56 points (previous best of 40 in 2008 & 2009),
    15 wins (11 in 2009), a +25 goal differential (+8 in 2009),
    45 goals scored (tied w/ 45 from the 32-game season in 2006), 1.50 goals
    per game (1.43 in 2009), 15 shutouts (10 in 2009), 19 road
    points
    (15 in 2006), and a +1 road goal differential (-8 in
    2006).

 

  • With his 11th and 12th goals of
    the regular season, Álvaro Saborío not only easily wrapped up RSL’s
    2010 Golden Boot award
    , but he also tied Robbie Findley’s 2009
    campaign as the second-most prolific goal-scoring regular season
    by an
    RSL player, trailing only Jeff Cunningham’s 16-goal haul in 2006.
    The Costa Rican striker now has 18 goals in 32 appearances across all
    competitions for Real Salt Lake in 2010 (6 in CONCACAF Champions League
    play).

 

  • The 2010 regular season campaign for GK Nick Rimando
    will not only go down as the greatest of his stellar 11-year MLS
    career, but one of the best in MLS history. The All-Star netminder’s 18
    goals allowed in 27 League appearances this season gave him a 0.67 GAA,
    which smashed the previous single-season high of 0.82 set by Houston GK
    Pat Onstad in 2007; however, FC Dallas ‘keeper Kevin
    Hartman
    could reset the mark tomorrow, as he carries a 0.62 GAA into
    the Hoops’ season finale at Los Angeles. Rimando’s 14 clean sheets
    were also the second most in an MLS season, behind only Tony Meola’s
    16 shutouts for the Kansas City Wizards in 2000, while RSL’s 15 total
    shutouts
    ranked behind only the 2000 Wizards’ 17 clean sheets

MAJOR LEAGUE SOCCER QUOTE SHEET

COLORADO RAPIDS  2  :  2 
REAL SALT LAKE

 

REAL SALT LAKE HEAD
COACH JASON KREIS

On ending of game and
penalty kick…

“You have to believe. I
think when a defender has both of his arms around a player, and it is quite
visible to everyone on the bench and is visible to everyone on the field as
well, it is a foul. I give credit to the referee for calling what was clearly a
penalty kick. He could have just as easily said that it was too late in the
game and not make the call. We have had some wild finishes against us. There
have been some situations when we have had that lead sometimes in this season.
We were up by two goals in the 75th minute and the lead went back
and forth between the 75th and the 90th minute. There all
types of hectic happenings in this game.”

On game…

“I thought that we
started out the game pretty brightly. We moved the ball pretty well and got
into the attacking third with relative and ease and created a few half chances
here and there. I was concerned because I felt that our defensive effort was
not there. We have recognized all season long that the way we try to play is
very difficult. It takes an extreme amount of work, concentration, focus and if
we are not quite there, if we are half a yard off, we will be punished for it.
Credit to Colorado, as they did that.

“I was looking at the
game towards the end of the match thinking that this was exactly what we
needed. To take the loss, but then we come out and get a draw. That feels good
too. As long as our guys take the responsibility and accountability for the
fact that we knew that that was not good enough. That was an unbelievably
emotional affair for us and those guys put a lot energy in there tonight.”

 

REAL SALT LAKE
DEFENDER NAT BORCHERS

On game…

“I don’t believe that we
came out with enough energy tonight. They came out to battle. They played well
in the midfield, we lost the ball a lot. Throughout the entire game in parts of
the field we were sharp. It was easily one of our worse performances of the
year. I don’t believe anyone is happy with it. Of course we got the tie, which
I feel very fortunate about. They are a good team and I don’t believe that we
responded very well to what they did to us and we have some things to work on
this week. We have come three years in a row now and not played well.”

On Omar Cummings’ goal…

“It was a tough one,
because Omar and Conor made a couple good runs in the box. The service was good
from Anthony Wallace. We could have defended the cross better and also we need
to stay with our marks in the box. I don’t think that we did that well enough.
The ball came to the most dangerous striker in the league at this time, and he
punished us for it.”

 

COLORADO RAPIDS HEAD
COACH GARY SMITH

On the game…

“In a competitive game
in the final seconds of what has been a very good display by our group the
referee finds a foul to be given when probably on 9 out of 10 occasions on
corner kicks or free kicks there is a lot of bodily contact. All I can say is
there was a lot of contact in the box, there’s going to be considering it is
the 95th minute; it’s the last free kick of the game- there’s going
to be. Now unless Brian has done something completely outrageous, which I can’t
image, I find it a bit bizarre. The catalyst for their comeback was a freak
goal. I told Matt (Pickens) that will never happen again in his career. All in
all for 90 minutes we were not only the better team but I thought by a country
mile. Anything that was created, we created. I thought we showed passion and
determination and creativeness all rolled into one. But these games are 90
minutes plus and you have to be on your guard for however long it lasts. Today
we paid the ultimate price for that.”

 

COLORADO RAPIDS
DEFENDER KOSUKE KIMURA

On the game’s ending…

“Everything was going
according to order, perfectly. Matt (Pickens) made a mistake but oh well. I
don’t know what else we could have done. It’s not about how we played or what
we didn’t do; it’s more like a physiological thing. Those guys believe they can
come back. That’s why they have been playing good and won last year. They have
that confidence. They know if they push it a little more they can get it.”

 

COLORADO RAPIDS
MIDFIELDER BRIAN MULLAN

On the foul the
resulted in the PK…

“I got elbowed right
before the kick. It kind of shocked me. I just locked him (Kyle Beckerman) up.
He just ran over me- fell down.”

 

 

 

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