RSL 1 - Chivas USA 1 - quick thoughts and post match comments

Well it was clear that Chivas came in looking to play a very defensive mindset and would try to score of quick counters using Braun as their target.  They did exactly what they came into do, get a result.  RSL didn't play poorly at all, they clearly controlled possession and were the better team between the 18 yard boxes, but inside the area both sides were able to get one ball into the back of the net.

I know some people are going to dislike this next part, but you know that I try to be honest and that I call things as I see them.  I thought Kyle Beckerman played a great 60 minutes, as an individual player he did almost everything right but you could tell that after missing a couple months that they style and understanding of the midfield had changed and I believe it will take a couple matches back for everyone to get used to playing with each other again. 

The stats clearly show that RSL was the more aggressive and attacking team, a 20 to 5 advantage in shots, a 8 to 2 advantage in shots on goal and I would estimate a 60-40 edge in possession, but the score board is what matters and that ended 1-1 as RSL didn't lose any ground to LA but failed to take advantage of a match where they could have closed ground on the Western Conference leaders.  Enough from me, here are the comments of RSL head coach Jason Kreis:

Overall thoughts on the match:
"If we could play the game between the teams, we won that one didn't we? Unfortunately, you have to count the number of times it ends up in the back of the net. I think that quality was lacking just a bit for us. There were a couple of opportunities where I thought we could have done better, and maybe we should have done better. And obviously we made a mistake in front of our goal, but we win together and lose together. It would be easy to stand here and say ‘I can't believe Nick Rimando would make that kind of mistake,' but the converse of that is ‘I can't believe our midfielders and forwards didn't put more goals in.'"

On the result:
"I'm not disappointed with the results; I thought we did everything necessary to get a win. I'm very pleased with the guys' effort, energy, mentality - everything they did to the best of their abilities, and I can't ask for anything more."

On the return of Captain Kyle Beckerman:
"He was good. He was in the right spots, maybe a little bit rusty. He lost a few more balls than he typically would, one or two, and that's more than he usually does. I'm very pleased that he made it through 60 minutes with no problems, and we'll see how he is tomorrow."

On Ned Grabavoy's go-ahead volley in the 67th minute:
"It was fantastic. It was one of those strikes that gets me to jump off the bench."

On Chivas USA's equalizer from Jesus Padilla:
"The ball was struck hard at Nick [Rimando], and I think he said he blocked it down in between his own legs and into the back of the net. That doesn't happen often, and I'm sure that now that it's out of his system, it won't happen again this year."

More comments from RSL players after the jump:

REAL SALT LAKE GOALKEEPER NICK RIMANDO

On the Chivas USA:
"I've got to do better on that. I know these balls move. He hit it right at me and I thought I had it and the next thing you know the ball goes right through my legs and into the net. It's one of those funny bounces and I've got to put my hand up for sure and take care of that"

On the match:
"We wanted three [points], especially the way we were playing. We had so many chances and we just couldn't find the back of the net until Ned makes a spectacular goal that puts us ahead, and then I let that goal in and let the team down."

On looking ahead to next weekend and D.C. United:
"We pick each other up, we don't need to panic at all. A point's a point, and we're still moving up so next week we'll look to get three points against D.C."

REAL SALT LAKE CAPTAIN KYLE BECKERMAN

On his return to play after a two-month absence:

"I felt good. Our goal was to get to about 60 minutes, so in that respect it was positive for me, outside of us not winning. Nobody really knew how long it was going to take [to return to the field], so we felt like we made the right decision in not getting the surgery. The foot felt pretty solid after the match, and I think my fitness will come back; it's tough to be out for two months and then try to go 90 minutes."

Here are the thoughts from the other side of the match:

CHIVAS USA HEAD COACH MARTIN VASQUEZ

Overall thoughts on the match:
"We came here with the attitude to win the game because we need to add points to stay close to all the teams in the Conference. We will take the point; it's a good result considering the way things happened in the game. The effort and the load of nine games in 28 days, I think it was a good result and we will take it."

On Chivas' ability to change formations on the fly:
"We just apply the fundamentals and principles of playing in whatever formation we play. We try to defend with pressure, cover and balance. Whenever we are attacking, we try to give a lot of mobility and support. Today we changed on the fly to a 5-4-1 because [Real Salt Lake] was pressuring us."

On newcomer Giancarlo Maldonado's performance:
"I think he did well. It's not easy to come to [Rio Tinto Stadium] against the Champions. It's a big field and it's a high altitude. I think, at times, he was dangerous, and he was good with the ball. I think he needs a little more time to adjust, and with a couple of more games I think it will help. But I am happy with his performance."

It was clear that like many of the matches between these two teams that there is a lot of respect but some disdain for the other side, the match got physical early with some hard tackles and challenges.  I thought the official tried to stay in control but a number of questionable non- calls seemed to have taken place but I will need to rewatch the match to see if they look as bad from their angles as they did from my vantage point on the pitch.

It was clear that RSL was the better team on the day, but as is sometimes the case in soccer the better team doesn't always end up on top.

OFF MY SOAPBOX

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