Preview: Real Salt Lake v. Sporting Kansas City
SANDY, Utah – Supporters’ Shield leaders Real Salt Lake (11-5-4, 37 points, West #1) will look to extend its unbeaten streak to 12 games across all competitions on Saturday, when it will host second-place Sporting Kansas City (9-5-6, 33 points, East #1) at 8:00 p.m. MT at Rio Tinto Stadium. A very limited number of tickets are available to the match, which will be followed by a postgame fireworks display in celebration of Pioneer Day.
Saturday’s match will be broadcast live on CW30, ESPN700 AM and 102.3 La Gran D/1600 AM. CW30 will air its 30-minute Ford Pregame Show starting at 7:30 p.m. MT; ESPN 700 will begin its pregame coverage at 7:00 p.m. MT and will air an hour-long postgame show immediately after the final whistle.
Saturday’s game will be the second-straight match that will see first-place RSL take on the second-place side in the Supporters’ Shield standings. The Claret-and-Cobalt won in emphatic fashion over then second-place FC Dallas last Saturday, getting goals from MF Javier Morales, MF Ned Grabavoy and FW Olmes Garcia to defeat FCD 3-0 at FC Dallas Stadium to register the club’s first ever win in Texas and 100th MLS regular season victory.
Last weekend’s win continued RSL’s incredible run of form, extending the team’s unbeaten streak to 11 games across all competitions and moving the Claret-and-Cobalt to 9-0-2 in that span. RSL has outscored its opponents by a 30-10 margin during its unbeaten run, scoring multiple goals in nine of the 11 matches and registering five shutouts.
The Claret-and-Cobalt will again be shorthanded due to international duty and injuries on Saturday. MF Kyle Beckerman (U.S.), DF Tony Beltran (U.S.), GK Nick Rimando (U.S.) and FW Alvaro Saborio (Costa Rica) will all miss the match while on CONCACAF Gold Cup duty, while GK Josh Saunders and DF Carlos Salcedo will miss the match due to injuries, joining DF Chris Schuler, DF Kwame Watson-Siriboe, DF Rich Balchan and MF John Stertzer on RSL’s injury list.
Saturday’s game will be the only 2013 regular season meeting between RSL and Sporting Kansas City. The Claret-and-Cobalt lost its last match against SKC, falling 1-0 to the Eastern Conference side at Sporting Park on April 14, 2012.
Kansas City enters Saturday’s match unbeaten in its last five matches and winners of three of its last four. SKC won its last game handily, beating 10-man Toronto FC 3-0 at Sporting Park last Saturday to move to the top of the Eastern Conference table. Sporting Kansas City lost one key player to international duty this week, as DF Matt Besler joined Beckerman, Beltran and Rimando on the U.S. squad ahead of Sunday’s Gold Cup Quarterfinal against El Salvador in Baltimore.
RSL will hit the road in its next match, traveling to the east coast to take on Eastern Conference power New York Red Bulls at Red Bull Arena next Saturday, July 27 at 5:00 p.m. MT. The match will be broadcast live on ABC4.
How to Follow Real Salt Lake v. Sporting Kansas City
- Kickoff: 8:00 p.m. MT at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy, Utah
- TV: CW30 (Ford Pregame Show to begin at 7:30 p.m. MT)
- English Radio: ESPN700 AM (Pregame begins at 7:00 p.m. MT)
- Spanish Radio: La Gran D 102.3 FM & Juan 1600 AM
- Online: The @RealSaltLake Twitter Feed will provide live match updates
MLS Game Guide for Saturday’s RSL v. SKC Match Now Available Online
RSL History v. Sporting Kansas City
Real Salt Lake is 5-7-3 in MLS regular season matches against Sporting Kansas City. The Claret-and-Cobalt has done well against Kansas City in Utah, posting a 4-2-1 record against SKC and outscoring the Eastern Conference side 12-9 in seven games in the Beehive State.
RSL lost its last match against Sporting Kansas City, giving up a 63rd minute goal to SKC DF Aurelien Collin to fall 1-0 at Sporting Park on April 14, 2012.