Preview: RSL at Seattle Sounders FC

RSL heads to Seattle for 1-v-2 battle with Sounders FC

SANDY, Utah – Real Salt Lake will head to the Pacific Northwest for a 1-v-2 matchup on Saturday, taking on first-place Seattle Sounders FC at CenturyLink Field at 2:00 p.m. MT. Saturday’s match will be broadcast live on CW30, ESPN 700 and 102.3 La Gran D FM.

Saturday’s contest will be a duel for the top spot in the league. RSL currently sits in second-place in both the Western Conference and in MLS, two points behind first-place Seattle, which has a game in hand on the Claret-and-Cobalt.

RSL also enters this weekend’s matchup looking to continue its unbeaten start to the 2014 season. Real Salt Lake tied the all-time MLS record for longest unbeaten start to a season with its 0-0 draw against FC Dallas at Rio Tinto Stadium last Saturday. The Claret-and-Cobalt now jointly hold the 12-game record with the 1996 and 2010 LA Galaxy and 2000 Kansas City Wizards. The draw also moved first-year RSL Head Coach Jeff Cassar into a tie with 1996 LA Head Coach Lothar Osiander for longest unbeaten start to a managerial career in MLS history.

Saturday’s matchup will be the first time RSL and Seattle have met this year. Real Salt Lake posted a 2-1-0 record against the Sounders last year, improving its all-time regular season record to 5-3-4 against the Cascadia side. The two sides last met on September 13, 2013, with Seattle topping RSL 2-0 at CenturyLink Field behind goals from Seattle FW’s Obafemi Martins and Lamar Neagle.

The Claret-and-Cobalt have had mixed results when in Seattle, posting a 2-2-2 regular season record at CenturyLink Field. RSL and Seattle met in the MLS Cup Playoffs in back-to-back years in 2011 and 2012. RSL took the series in 2011, defeating the Sounders 3-0 at Rio Tinto Stadium and going through on aggregate after suffering a 2-0 defeat at CenturyLink Field. In 2012, Seattle managed to bounce the Claret-and-Cobalt from the playoffs with a scoreless draw in Washington and a 1-0 victory in Utah. Real Salt Lake is 6-6-5 against Seattle all-time across all competitions, including MLS Cup Playoff and U.S. Open Cup play. CenturyLink Field is also the site of RSL’s greatest triumph; the Claret-and-Cobalt took home MLS Cup by beating LA Galaxy in a penalty kick shootout at the Seattle facility in 2009.

Real Salt Lake and Sounders FC enter Saturday’s match missing a handful of key players due to international duty. Saturday will be RSL’s third-straight match without Captain Kyle Beckerman (USA), GK Nick Rimando (USA) and FW Alvaro Saborio (Costa Rica). Beckerman and Rimando are on the U.S.’s final World Cup roster; Saborio was in Costa Rica’s pre-World Cup training camp before suffering a broken right fifth metatarsal on Thursday that will keep him out for 3-4 months.

Seattle will be missing its young DF DeAndre Yedlin and leading goal scorer FW Clint Dempsey, who were both named to U.S. Manager Jurgen Klinsmann’s final 23-man World Cup roster along with Beckerman and Rimando.

Seattle currently sits in first place in the Western Conference with an 8-3-2 record to start the season and total of 26 points. The Sounders are coming off a thrilling 2-2 draw against Vancouver Whitecaps FC last weekend in which MF’s Chad Barrett and Gonzalo Pineda found the back of the net for the visiting side.

Real Salt Lake will continue its road schedule after Saturday’s match, taking on Eastern Conference side Columbus Crew on Wednesday, June 4 at 5:30 p.m. MT at Crew Stadium. Wednesday’s match will be broadcast live on CW30, ESPN 700 and 102.3 La Gran D FM. RSL won’t return home until Saturday, June 7 when it hosts Portland Timbers at 8:00 p.m. The June 7 match will be RSL’s last before MLS takes a three-week break for the World Cup. Tickets to the RSL-Portland contest 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 Seattle Sounders FC

  • Kickoff: 2:00 p.m. MT at Seattle Sounders FC
  • TV: CW30
  • 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-SEA Match Now Available Online

Click here to download the PDF version of the MLS Game Guide for Saturday’s RSL-SEA matchup

RSL History v. Seattle Sounders FC

The Claret-and-Cobalt have had mixed results when in Seattle, posting a 2-2-2 regular season record at CenturyLink Field. RSL and Seattle have also met in the MLS Cup Playoffs in back-to-back years in 2011 and 2012. RSL took the series in 2011, defeating the Sounders 3-0 at Rio Tinto Stadium and going through on aggregate after suffering a 2-0 defeat at CenturyLink Field. In 2012, Seattle managed to bounce the Claret-and-Cobalt from the playoffs with a scoreless draw in Washington and a 1-0 victory in Utah. Real Salt Lake is 6-6-5 against Seattle all-time across all competitions, including MLS Cup Playoff and U.S. Open Cup play.