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Cassar likely to start nearly full-strength lineup in Desert Diamond Cup final

Who starts in Saturday's match pitting Real Salt Lake against the Colorado Rapids in the Desert Diamond Cup Final? We’ve got our ideas, and here to share them with you is contributing writer Weston Jenson.

Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports


As the final preseason match, expect the coaching staff to treat this match as its final preparation for the MLS regular season.  He will likely rely heavily on starting XI players as they round into regular season form.  That being said, do not be surprised to see fringe players eat up some of this match's minutes.  Therefore, expect Real Salt Lake to field a close to full strength squad and a few substitutions for players that stood-out during the preseason.  In any case, we are going to give it a try and explain our reasoning.


Expect RSL to set up in an attacking 4-3-3 formation which is easily becoming Jeff Cassar's go to formation for 2015 - well, the preseason at least. It seems to be catching on as 86 percent of fans agreed with us that RSL will field a 4-3-3 formation.

Predicted Line-Up

RSL Soapbox and Fan Vote (All over 66%): Rimando; Beltran, Olave, Schuler, Mansally; Morales, Beckerman, Gil; Jaime, Saborio, Garcia.

Goalkeeper - Nick Rimando

The veteran net minder will take his position in between the posts in order to prepare for the regular season.

Right Back - Tony Beltran

Providing a veteran presence on the back line, Beltran will start to stabilize the defense.

Center Back Pairing - Jamison Olave and Chris Schuler

Starting the premier center back pairing of Olave and Schuler will give them time to adjust to their partnership and prepare for the regular season.  Like Nat Borchers did, expect this defensive pair to dominate the speedy attackers of Colorado.

Left Back - Abdoulie Mansally

Mansally is almost certain to start as Demar Phillips is still nursing his injury from the FC Tucson match.  Expect Mansally to do many of the same things as Phillips, but to also provide steady defense against the likes of Deshorn Brown.

Holding Midfielder - Kyle Beckerman

Expect the skipper to provide solid defensive play for the back line and help orchestrate the formation/ movement of a squad.

Box-to-Box Midfielder - Luis Gil

Gil will likely put in some serious minutes before the start of the regular season.  Expect Gil to be given more responsibility in the RSL attack.

Attacking Midfielder - Javier Morales

The maestro will take up his usually spot in the driver's seat of RSL.  While Morales will still drive the midfield, expect the veteran to let his partner Gil do a lot of the roaming.

Right Winger - Sebastian Jaime

Jaime will look to continue his impressive run of form during this preseason.  Already netting one goal, watch Jaime as he pushes for yet another before the start of the season.

Center Forward - Alvaro Saborio

The veteran Costa Rican will look to start in order to remain in form this preseason.  Expect some excellent plays from the number nine.

Left Winger - Olmes Garcia

Expect the coaching staff to continue experimenting with the versatile youngster.  Garcia could likely get a start to continue his development as he works to begin the season as a starting XI player.  But do not be surprised if the coaching staff inserts Jordan Allen into this role as an inverted winger.