So it should be obvious that nobody in the RSL organization or RSL fans are happy about how the match ended on Saturday, that includes me. At this point we can learn from it, we can make some adjustments, and we can get ready for FC Dallas on Saturday and Tauro FC next Tuesday. I do expect that we might see some major changes to the lineup for Saturday, as 4 RSL players will be taking part in midweek friendly matches for their national teams. So let's take a quick look at the official match recap from Saturday:
REAL SALT LAKE FALLS 1-2 AT VANCOUVER
Claret-and-Cobalt Drop 5th-Straight Road Game Across All Competitions; Late Goal by Nat Borchers Snaps 450-minute Scoreless Streak Away
VANCOUVER, Canada (Saturday, Aug. 11, 2012) - Real Salt Lake (13-9-3, 42 points, West #2) dropped its fifth consecutive road match across all competitions on Saturday, conceding twice in the second half to fall 2-1 at Vancouver Whitecaps FC. Real Salt Lake DF Nat Borchers headed home a Paulo Junior cross in the waning moments to pull a goal back, snapping the club's road scoring drought at 360 minutes in MLS play and 450 minutes over all competitions (July 31 CONCACAF Champions League loss at Herediano).
Both teams started the match relatively well, trading a chances in the opening 25 minutes. Vancouver had the first opportunity, nearly going ahead in the 13th minute when FW Camilo forced RSL GK Nick Rimando into a difficult save with a blistering shot from 30 yards.
RSL hit back with a chance of its own in the 25th minute. FW Alvaro Saborío - who scored both RSL goals in the team's 2-1 win over Vancouver at Rio Tinto Stadium on July 27 - got on the end of MF Javier Morales' cross at the left post, flicking a fabulous header past Vancouver GK Brad Knighton and DF Jay DeMerit as they collided, the ball banging harmlessly off the post.
more after the jump:
DeMerit stayed down after knocking heads with Knighton on the play and - despite gamely attempting to keep playing - had to be taken off in the 31st minute. He was replaced by MLS debutant DF Andy O'Brien.
Camilo had another chance in first-half stoppage time, nearly putting Vancouver on the board just before the break. The Brazilian attacker got on the end of MF Barry Robson's cross at the PK spot, rising above a multitude of other players and snapping a solid header toward goal to force Rimando into a fine diving save.
That chance took the sides into halftime. RSL made a precautionary change at the break, taking out Morales due to slight adductor tightness and replacing him with MF Luis Gil.
Vancouver took advantage of a fortunate bounce to take the lead in the 58th minute. Camilo got the goal, running onto RSL MF Will Johnson's deflected clearance in the left side of the box before finishing from a tight angle.
FW Dane Richards doubled Whitecaps FC's advantage just six minutes later. The Jamaican international collected a pass from FW Darren Mattocks just right of center, taking advantage of ample time on the ball to curl a 25-yard right-footer inside the near post.
The Claret-and-Cobalt had a decent chance in the 66th minute. Saborío had the look, driving a low shot toward the far post from the top right corner of the 18 that Knighton bobbled before eventually collecting.
RSL's urgency escalated as the second half wore on, the insertion of FW Paulo Junior bringing energy to the pitch. The fleet-footed Brazilian - returning to the RSL gameday 18 after a few weeks on a short-term loan with the minor-league Ft. Lauderdale Strikers, where he scored a goal and added an assist in two games - tracked down a ball in the corner. Paulo Junior then sent a far post cross into the box, where veteran RSL DF Nat Borchers ran on and rose above the Vancouver defense to cut the lead to one goal.
- Tonight's loss drops RSL to 4-6-1 in its last 11 MLS games since the early June FIFA break in MLS play, including a 1-4-0 mark away from home, the only road win coming on June 16 in the 3-0 victory at Chivas USA ... Incidentally, the Borchers goal during tonight's stoppage time was the first since Will Johnson scored at The Home Depot Center to close out that win, RSL being outscored 11-2 on the road in that span ...
- For the second consecutive week, RSL failed to win on the road, three points that would have allowed the club to leap-frog over current MLS Supporters Shield and Western Conference incumbent San Jose Earthquakes, which hold a two-point lead - and a game in hand - over RSL, pending tonight's result at home against Seattle Sounders FC ... With tonight's Vancouver win over RSL, the second-year Whitecaps FC move into a third-place tie with Seattle in the West race at 37 points ...
- The setback at Vancouver drops RSL to 4-6-2 on the road this year, stuck on 14 points - one win and five points shy of matching the club's all-time high, set last year with a 5-8-4 (19 points) cumulative road performance ...
- Next Saturday, RSL hosts visiting FC Dallas (5-11-9, 24 points, West #8) at Rio Tinto Stadium, the West foe traveling to Salt Lake on the heels of tonight's home match against Colorado and a Wednesday visit to Vancouver ...
- Just 72 hours after RSL hosts Dallas, matchday #2 in the 2012/13 CONCACAF Champions League arrives to Sandy, as Panamanian champion Tauro FC arrives ... RSL trails group leader Herediano (Costa Rica) by virtue of the club's 0-1 loss on July 31 ...
- A very limited number of tickets remain for both August home matches for RSL, and can be purchased online a twww.RioTintoStadium.com or by calling 801.727.2700 Mon-Sat during business hours 10a-6p ... Fans can also visit the Rio Tinto Stadium box office or the RSL Team Store (10a-5p) on the northeast corner of the Stadium ...
- Two of RSL's perennial starters - FW Alvaro Saborio (Costa Rica) and MF Will Johnson (Canada) - depart directly from Vancouver on Sunday to join their respective national teams for FIFA friendlies on Wednesday, Costa Rica hosting Peru in San Jose's National Stadium and Canada facing Trinidad & Tobago in Florida ...
- The United States National Team travels to Mexico City's famed Azteca Stadium to face regional arch-rival Mexico, with RSL Captain Kyle Beckerman and GK Nick Rimando hoping to have their names announced Sunday at 2:00 p.m. MT by USMNT manager Jurgen Klinsmann, when he unveils the USA selection ...
Post Match Quotes:
HEAD COACH JASON KREIS
Thoughts on the match:
"I'm really pleased with the performance the guys put in to the first half. A lot of hard work and determination and grit on our part to try and get a result on the road. It's been quite a few games now since we've done that."
Thoughts on first Whitecaps goal:
"I think it all went for naught when we suffered the first goal, which was, from my point of view, extremely unlucky. For us to clear it off of ourselves and have the ball drop down to their forward in the box."
Thoughts on the second Whitecaps goal:
"The second goal wasn't good at all. We basically gifted them that goal by trying to play too many passes in a tight space on the right side of the field. A bit naive there, but pleased that the guys responded and worked hard and pleased that they got a goal and got something out of this."
How to address their struggles on the road:
"We've got to keep working. We've got to keep paying attention to the details and do a little bit better in every aspect of our game."
Difference this match from two weeks ago:
"I think they got a lucky bounce to open up the scoring and we didn't respond quite as well as I'd have liked to have.
GK NICK RIMANDO
Thoughts on the match:
"I thought we played pretty good. The first half we came out and shut them down. Not really creating a lot of chances but we kept the ball and that's something that we talked about coming into this game. Second half I think we did ok, but then a misclearance led to their goal and after that we were pretty much left chasing the game a little bit. Didn't possess the ball really well after that and I think that's hwo they got down, countered and then Dane got their second."
Thought's on Richards' goal:
"He did well to use our defender to screen and whipped it around the near post high. I tried to stay low and react as best as I can but I think he did really well."
Difference from the match two weeks ago:
"I thought we battled pretty hard both games. They have some fantastic players on their team, as do we. Any team that plays at home they get that extra push frmo their fans and will be a little bit more comfortable on their home turf and today I thought they played great and gave us a run for our money and put their chances away."
MF KYLE BECKERMAN
Thoughts on the match:
"There wasn't too much between both teams and we got a bit unlucky with the first goal but it was still early. Then Richards took a half chance and scored a really good goal and left us playing catch up really trying to get back in it. We got the goal a bit too late and then just ran out of time."
Thoughts on Richards goal:
"Richards took a half chance and made it a real chance and a great goal really. Then we just tried to battle on to get one to get back in it. We finally got it but a little too late and we ran out of time."
Struggles on the road:
"If we had the answer we'd be undefeated. It's something you've got to work at I think that winning on the road is really difficult and not many teams do for some reason. We'll just keep at it and keep working hard and it seems if you can get one, maybe a couple others will come with it so hopefully we'll get one."
On getting back a goal late in the game:
"It's good to get a goal, so we'll build off that and hopefully that'll help us get a win soon."
OK, that is the last of that one you will hear from me.
OFF MY SOAPBOX