Preview: RSL at Philadelphia Union
SANDY, Utah – Real Salt Lake will look to continue its unbeaten start to the season on Saturday, when it will take on Philadelphia Union at 2:00 p.m. MT at PPL Park. Saturday’s match will be broadcast locally on ABC 4, ESPN 700 and 102.3 La Gran D FM.
Real Salt Lake enters Saturday’s match undefeated with a 2-0-3 record and nine points from its first five MLS regular season games. Real Salt Lake earned a hard-fought 0-0 draw with Sporting Kansas City at Sporting Park last Saturday. RSL backup GK Jeff Attinella, who was filling in for injured GK Nick Rimando, put in a stellar performance, earning his second career clean sheet and making a total of eight saves at SKC. Attinella could be called into action again this weekend, as Rimando continues to deal with a knee injury suffered in the U.S. Men’s National Team’s 2-2 draw against Mexico on April 2.
Real Salt Lake and Philadelphia Union last met on July 4, 2013, in a 2-2 draw at Rio Tinto Stadium. A late penalty kick goal from RSL MF Javier Morales in the 97th minute gave a 10-man Claret-and-Cobalt side a thrilling draw in front of a sold-out crowd. RSL went down a man when trailing 1-0 in the 59th minute, when Referee Ismail Elfath controversially showed former RSL DF Lovel Palmer a straight red card for a tackle on former Philadelphia MF Michael Farfan. RSL substitute MF Luis Gil equalized for the Utah side in the 75th, only for Union FW Conor Casey to give Philadelphia its second lead of the night one minute later. Morales pulled RSL level deep into stoppage time, converting his spot kick after a Union hand ball in the area.
The last meeting between the two sides at PPL Park on Aug. 24, 2012 resulted in a scoreless draw. Real Salt Lake has never lost in Philadelphia, posting a 0-0-3 record at PPL Park all-time. The Claret-and-Cobalt is unbeaten all-time against the Union, holding a 2-0-4 all-time record against Philadelphia.
Real Salt Lake was hit with an early season injury bug but will look to have most of its players back and available for selection for Saturday’s tilt in Philadelphia. RSL DF Tony Beltran (R ankle), DF Chris Wingert (R hamstring) and MF Sebastian Velasquez (L hamstring) have all returned to full training this week. Claret-and-Cobalt FW’s Robbie Findley (R knee) and Joao Plata (L hamstring) are both out for Saturday’s match, while MF Luis Gil (L hamstring) is a doubt due to an injury picked up last week at Kansas City. RSL MF Jordan Allen, who has recovered from his ankle injury, and FW Benji Lopez were called up to the U.S. Under-20 Men’s National Team on Wednesday to participate in the Dallas Cup tournament and will not be available for Saturday’s MLS match.
Philadelphia Union is off to a 1-1-3 start to the 2014 season. The Union most recently tied Chicago Fire 2-2 last Saturday at Toyota Park. After taking a 2-1 lead going into the half, the Union allowed Fire FW Juan Luis Anangono to equalize in the 86th minute before Philadelphia GK Zac MacMath preserved the point with a stoppage time penalty kick stop on Chicago FW Mike Magee.
The Union made a splash in the offseason, signing U.S. international MF Maurice Edu on loan from English Premier League side Stoke City FC. The California native has a one goal and one assist through five MLS matches. Philadelphia recently traded its 2013 leading scorer, FW Jack McInerney, to Montreal Impact in exchange for FW Andrew Wenger.
Real Salt Lake will return home on Saturday, April 19, when it will host Portland Timbers at 7:30 p.m. MT. Tickets to the Portland match can be purchased at the Rio Tinto Stadium box office, online at www.RealSaltLake.com/Tickets or over the phone at 801-727-2700.
How to Follow Real Salt Lake at Philadelphia Union
- Kickoff: 2:00 p.m. MT at Philadelphia Union
- TV: ABC 4
- English Radio: ESPN700 AM (Pregame begins at 1:00 p.m. MT)
- Spanish Radio: 102.3 La Gran D FM
- Online: The @RealSaltLake Twitter Feed will provide match updates
Game Guide for Saturday’s RSL-PHI Match Now Available Online
RSL History v. Philadelphia Union
Real Salt Lake and Philadelphia Union last met on July 4, 2013, in a 2-2 draw at Rio Tinto Stadium. A late penalty kick goal from RSL MF Javier Morales in the 97th minute gave a 10-man Claret-and-Cobalt a thrilling draw in front of a sold-out crowd.
The last meeting between the two sides at PPL Park on Aug. 24, 2012 resulted in a scoreless draw. Real Salt Lake has never won in Philadelphia, posting a 0-0-3 record at PPL Park all-time. The Claret-and-Cobalt holds a 2-0-4 all-time record against the Union.