Real Salt Lake host a Western Confernce nemesis in the Seattle Sounders on Saturday afternoon at Rio Tinto. After dropping points in their respective home opener against Sporting Kansas City, the Sounders will look to play as the spoiler this weekend.
In net for Seattle is the usually consistent Stefan Frei. The 29 year old Swiss keeper will be looking to rebound after a disappointing 1-0 loss to open the season. He shouldered the blame for the Sounders defeat tweeting: "So disappointed that a good performance by the team was ruined by my mistake last night... Looking ahead to RSL to bounce back quickly." Frei and co. will be looking to put their SKC blunder in the past ASAP.
The Sounders will have to replace right back Oniel Fisher after a two-footed lunge on SKC's Connor Hallisey. Tyrone Mears is likely to start in his place along with Chad Marshall, Zach Scott and new addition Joevin Jones. Seattle has pace on the flanks while having a strong central defense. Marshall is always a set piece threat and will need to be marked closely by Real Salt Lake. Brad Evans seems likely to miss out through injury.
If last week is anything to go by, Seattle will start with a midfield trio of Osvaldo Alonso, Cristian Roldan and Andreas Ivanschitz. Ivanschitz will look to create in the number 10 role while Alonso and Roldan will stay back to clean up play for any potential counter attacks. Ivanschitz has years of European experience and is still a bit of an unknown commodity in MLS. After being signed late in the season last year, the Austrian international will be looking to jump onto the scene.
The Sounders will look to display an attacking trident consisting of Nelson Valdez and United States national team members Jordan Morris and captain Clint Dempsey. The Americans will look to take place in wide positions and float around the box while Valdez does the dirty work and hold up play in the middle. The big threat to be worried about is Dempsey. After being heralded as one of the most striking dangerous striking duos with Obafemi Martins, the speedy Nigerian forward left unexpectedly to join Shanghai Shenhua. Jordan Morris will look to be an apprentice to Martins in Seattle while also potentially being Dempsey's in the national team. Making his 2nd ever MLS appearance, the former Stanford forward will be one to look out for in the future, for both club and country.