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What we’re watching in LA Galaxy vs Real Salt Lake

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RSL travel to the city of angels to take on a struggling Galaxy

MLS: Real Salt Lake at Los Angeles Galaxy Orlando Ramirez-USA TODAY Sports

Real Salt Lake have had a good showing in the league recently, taking nine points from their last three games. This game will be Real’s fifth in fifteen days. LA Galaxy are five points and five places behind RSL, having tied and lost their last two games. With the dos Santos brothers away for the World Cup, will RSL be able to take advantage of this trip to LA?

Albert is back

Albert Rusnak has returned from international duty and should start this game. For the first time since he joined the club, starting him as the number ten may not be what’s best for the team. Kreilach impressed in his absence and looked much better there than as a defensive mid. Rusnak often plays on the wing for his national team, so we could see him there. That would be an experiment worth trying, as it would mean we could get Rusnank, Damir, Sunny, and Beckerman all on the field at the same time. Where Albert lines up is going to be key to both this game and perhaps RSL’s future.

Backline vs the lion

Not to overhype the man, but Zlatan Ibrahimović is very good at this sport. It’ll be fun to watch him but also fascinating to see how our backline and defensive mids deny Zlatan. The self-proclaimed lion has been dangerous in MLS, netting five goals in ten games played. There was a time, and not long ago, had Zlatan been playing when Ronaldo and Messi were not, he likely would’ve been considered the best in the world. He’s one to watch through his time on the field, and so is our defense’s response to him.

Extending league points

On Wednesday, RSL lost in the US Open Cup. It was a disappoint result, but starting the competition against SKC always meant the first challenge would be one of the most difficult. Petke made it very clear in the post match press conference that he was prioritizing league play against an Open Cup win. That puts a lot of weight on this game. RSL rested key players, many of whom had always played in their busy schedule, so we should see guys fairly fresh and ready to get a result in LA.

Injury Report

Out:

Beltran (knee 10/15/17)

Allen (knee 6/16/17)

Barry (knee 3/10)

Phillips (ankle 4/7)

Horwath (achilles 4/18)

Mulholland (back 5/2)

Questionable:

Plata (back 6/2)

Predicted Line Up

Rimando

Lennon, Glad, M.Silva, Acosta

Beckerman, Sunny

Savarino, Kreilach, Rusnak

Baird