Preview: RSL v. Seattle Sounders FC
SANDY, Utah – Real Salt Lake will renew its rivalry with 2011 and 2012 Western Conference Semifinal opponent Seattle Sounders FC on Saturday at 7:00 p.m. MT at Rio Tinto Stadium.
A shorthanded RSL side – which was without a whopping 11 players due to international call-ups and injuries – lost its last match, conceding twice in the final 20 minutes to drop a 2-0 result at FC Dallas last Saturday.
Saturday’s game will be broadcast live on CW30, ESPN700 AM and 102.3 La Gran D/1600 AM. CW30 will air its 30-minute Ford Postgame Show immediately following the match; ESPN 700 will begin its pregame coverage at 6:00 p.m. MT and will air an hour-long postgame show immediately following the final whistle.
Real Salt Lake captain Kyle Beckerman, DF Tony Beltran, DF Abdoulie Mansally, GK Nick Rimando and FW Alvaro Saborio are all scheduled to be available for Saturday’s match after missing the Dallas game while on international duty. MF Sebastian Velasquez is expected to return to the Claret-and-Cobalt lineup after missing last week’s game due to an illness.
It’s not all good news, however, as RSL will still be without several key players on Saturday due to injuries and suspension. DF Chris Wingert (R Fractured Metatarsal), MF Cole Grossman (Concussion), DF Carlos Salcedo (Concussion), MF David Viana (R Quad Strain) and MF Yordany Alvarez (Red Card Suspension) will all miss the match, while the statuses of MF Javier Morales (R Knee Meniscectomy) and DF Rich Balchan (L Abdominal Non-Descript Muscle Injury) are up in the air.
RSL went 1-1-3 in five games against Seattle in the 2012 MLS regular season and 2012 MLS Cup Playoffs. Sounders FC bounced RSL from the Western Conference Semifinals last November, scoring a late goal at Rio Tinto Stadium in the series’ second leg to advance past the Claret-and-Cobalt 1-0 on aggregate. There were just two total goals scored in the five RSL-Seattle matches last year.
Seattle is 0-2-1 on the MLS season, losing 1-0 at home to Montreal in its season opener on March 2, tying Portland 1-1 at home on March 16 and losing 1-0 at San Jose on March 23.
Sounders FC have had more success in CONCACAF Champions League play, beating Mexican club Tigres UANL 3-2 on aggregate in the CCL Quarterfinals earlier this month. The Quarterfinal victory moved Seattle into the CCL Semifinals against Mexican club Santos Laguna. The first leg of the CCL Semis is on April 2 in Seattle, setting up some slight match congestion that could prompt Sounders FC Head Coach Sigi Schmid to sit some of his regulars on Saturday at Rio Tinto Stadium.
The Claret-and-Cobalt will play again on Monday, April 1, taking on Brigham Young University in a friendly match at Rio Tinto Stadium at 6:30 p.m. Tickets to the match are $5 for RSL Season Ticket Holders and $10 for the General Public and can be purchased online, at the Rio Tinto Stadium box office or by calling 801-727-2700.
RSL will return to MLS action on Saturday, April 6, when the team will face off against Rocky Mountain Cup Presented by Mark Miller Subaru rival the Colorado Rapids at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park.
How to Follow Real Salt Lake v. Seattle Sounders FC
- Kickoff: 7:00 p.m. MT at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy, Utah
- TV: CW30 (Ford Postgame Show to immediately follow final whistle)
- English Radio: ESPN700 AM (Pregame begins at 6:00 p.m. MT)
- Spanish Radio: La Gran D 102.3 FM & Juan 1600 AM
Online: The @RealSaltLake Twitter Feed will provide live match updates
RSL History v. Seattle Sounders FC
Real Salt Lake is 3-2-4 in MLS regular season matches against Seattle Sounders FC and 1-2-1 against Seattle in MLS Cup Playoff games.
RSL was 1-0-2 against Seattle in the 2012 regular season, beating Sounders FC 1-0 at CenturyLink Field on May 12 before playing the Cascadia club to scoreless draws in Utah on July 4 and in the Pacific Northwest on Oct. 17.