Lineup questions pivot around post-Open Cup fatigue, injuries

Real Salt Lake welcomes San Jose Earthquakes to Rio Tinto Stadium for the first time since June 2012, when the Bay Area side dropped RSL out of the top spot in the Western Conference for the season.

The home side could potentially be out some significant players, too, with a grueling US Open Cup tie certain to weigh on the home side's thinking.

After playing 120 minutes against Atlanta Silverbacks in the US Open Cup, some players may be facing a rest over starting against. Of those who would normally be in contention, Kwame Watson-Siriboe and Carlos Salcedo both played the full 120, as did Kyle Beckerman, Javier Morales and Chris Wingert.

They could well play, but Jason Kreis will have a longer-term eye on things so as to keep his squad healthy. As a result, some lesser-seen faces could see time.

Despite being called up by Costa Rica, Alvaro Saborio will miss today's match before departing on international duty. Issues with his quad following a tear earlier in the season will keep him out of this one. Why, exactly, he's been called up by Costa Rica despite having injury concerns is beyond me, and if he becomes more injured than before, we're all certain to flip our lids more than a little.

Chris Schuler might miss out too after both hand and foot pain during the last two weeks. The foot pain is particularly worrying, considering the center back's history with foot injuries that kept him from major minutes in the past two seasons.

Olmes Garcia may be out for the match, leaving the front line to be chosen between the remaining Joao Plata, Robbie Findley, and Devon Sandoval. Given Sandoval played 120 minutes on Tuesday, he may be a long shot. An option tried at times during reserve matches up top is Khari Stephenson, though how exactly the Jamaican would fare there in our system remains to be seen. He has experience up top for San Jose Earthquakes.

Stephenson is one of only a few players to have played with the Earthquakes: Ned Grabavoy played for them but was waived, giving RSL a chance to pick him up, and goalkeeper Josh Saunders started his MLS career with the Quakes, but saw no time on the pitch.

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