Preview: RSL v. Portland Timbers
SANDY, Utah – Real Salt Lake returns home on Saturday, as it hosts Western Conference rival Portland Timbers. Saturday’s match kicks at 8:00 p.m. MT at Rio Tinto Stadium and will be broadcast live on ABC 4, ESPN 700 AM and 102.3 La Gran D FM.
Real Salt Lake enters Saturday’s clash coming off a two-game road trip which saw the club lose its first match of the year, a 4-0 loss at Seattle Sounders FC on May 31, and earn a critical road point in a 1-1 draw at Columbus Crew on Wednesday. Real Salt Lake has performed well on the road this season, claiming a total of 13 points from its first eight road matches of the season.
Saturday’s clash with Portland will be the Claret-and-Cobalt’s third game in eight days, concluding one of RSL’s toughest stretches of the season. RSL has been without Captain Kyle Beckerman and veteran GK Nick Rimando who were both named to the U.S.’s final 23-man World Cup roster. RSL FW Alvaro Saborio was expected to be named to Costa Rica’s final roster but suffered a fifth metatarsal fracture in his right foot during his country’s World Cup training camp and will be out 3-4 months. Wednesday’s 1-1 draw with Columbus moved RSL to 3-3-4 in MLS play since the start of 2013 when Beckerman, Rimando and Saborio have all been missing from the lineup.
Saturday’s contest will be the second regular season meeting between RSL and Portland Timbers this year. The two sides last met on April 19 at Rio Tinto Stadium, with the Claret-and-Cobalt pulling off a 1-0 over the Cascadia side. RSL veteran MF Ned Grabavoy provided the lone goal, blasting a low left-footer inside the far post from 15 yards out.
Real Salt Lake has a successful history against the Portland Timbers, posting an 8-1-3 mark across all competitions against the Pacific Northwest side. The Claret-and-Cobalt is currently riding an 11-game unbeaten run across all competitions against the Oregon side, with the Timbers’ only win coming in April of 2011, when the two sides first met.
RSL posts a 5-1-3 all-time regular season record against Portland. The Claret-and-Cobalt and Timbers met a total of six times in 2013, with RSL posting a 4-0-2 mark across all competitions that year. In 2013 MLS regular season action, RSL drew the Timbers 3-3 on Aug. 21 in Portland, won 4-2 on Aug. 30 at Rio Tinto Stadium and drew 0-0 on Oct. 19 at formerly named JELD-WEN Field. The teams also played in the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Semifinal on Aug. 7 at Rio Tinto Stadium, with RSL topping the Timbers 2-1. RSL beat Portland in the 2013 Western Conference Final series, beating Portland 4-2 at home on Nov. 10 before winning the return leg 1-0 at Portland on Nov. 24 to take the series 5-2 on aggregate.
Historically, RSL has had a very diverse attack against Portland with ten different players scoring and eight different players assisting on a total of 15 goals in the Utah side’s last seven matches against the Timbers (2013-14). RSL MF Javier Morales leads the way for RSL with three goals; followed by Saborio, FW Joao Plata and FW Robbie Findley with two goals each; FW Devon Sandoval, MF Luis Gil, DF Chris Schuler, DF Nat Borchers, MF Cole Grossman and Grabavoy all have one tally against the Cascadia club in that time frame. Beckerman, Morales and Plata lead the way for RSL in assists, with three helpers each; Grabavoy, Gil, Findley, Saborio and MF Sebastian Velasquez all have one assist against Portland since the start of 2013.
With Real Salt Lake’s forward depth being tested, the Claret-and-Cobalt will hope to have the dynamic Plata available for Saturday’s match. The speedy Ecuadorian has missed RSL’s last two matches due to a hamstring injury suffered on May 24 against FC Dallas. Plata has six goals in nine appearances this year, tying him for the team lead with Saborio.
Portland Timbers enter Saturday’s match coming off a wild 4-3 loss to Vancouver Whitecaps FC at home last week. Last year’s Western Conference regular season points leaders have a 3-4-7 record on the season, with a total of 16 points placing them eighth in the West.
A very limited number of tickets to the Portland match still remain; they 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 v. Portland Timbers
- Kickoff: 8:00 p.m. MT v. Portland Timbers
- TV: ABC 4
- English Radio: ESPN700 AM (Pregame begins at 7:00 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-POR Match Now Available Online
Following is the link to the Adobe PDF version of the MLS Game Guide in advance of Saturday’s contest between Real Salt Lake and Portland Timbers. If you have any problems obtaining the document, would prefer to receive it as an attachment, or are seeking more information on the match, please contact PR Coordinator Jane Sexton in the RSL Communications Department via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Satellite Coordinates for Saturday’s RSL-POR Match
Real Salt Lake v. Portland Timbers
Saturday, June 7 at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy, UT – 8:00 p.m. MT
KTVX-ABC SALT LAKE
RSL History v. Portland
Real Salt Lake has a successful history against the Portland Timbers, posting a 5-1-3 all-time regular season record and an 8-1-3 mark across all competitions against the Pacific Northwest side. The two sides last met on April 19, 2014 at Rio Tinto Stadium, with RSL coming out on top with a 1-0 victory.
The Claret-and-Cobalt and Portland met a total of six times in 2013, with RSL posting a 4-0-2 mark across all competitions. RSL drew the Timbers 3-3 on Aug. 21 in Portland, won 4-2 on Aug. 30 at Rio Tinto Stadium and drew 0-0 on Oct. 19 at formerly named JELD-WEN Field. The teams also played in the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Semifinal on Aug. 7 at Rio Tinto Stadium, with RSL topping the Timbers 2-1. RSL beat Portland in the 2013 Western Conference Final series, beating Portland 4-2 at home on Nov. 10 before winning the return leg 1-0 at Portland on Nov. 24 to take the series 5-2 on aggregate. RSL is currently on a 10-game unbeaten streak against Portland, with the Claret-and-Cobalt’s lone loss to the Timbers coming in the first-ever game between the sides in Portland in April 2011.