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RSL vs Minnesota: What we learned

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Rust, fitness, and please do better next time

Real Salt Lake v Minnesota United FC - MLS Is Back Tournament Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images

Well, we found the rust. As we looked sharp in the beginning of our first match, this one was rusty and dull. There was nothing creative on the field tonight, and the loss of Rusnák could potentially hurt us going forward. Once he left, all creativity went with him.

Fitness & Subs

Fitness just wasn’t there tonight. It’s been a while. I get it.

But here’s the thing: we get five substitutions. Five. 5. V.

Why the hell are we subbing two players in at the 90th minute when we could be taking advantage of the opportunity to move five fresh players into the match much earlier (well, four I guess, considering Meram was a forced sub)?

Douglas Martínez wasn’t cutting it at the 50th-60th minute marks. There was no creativity. Players were tired.

Plan for it! We get five substitutions. That’s half the field players. That’s a completely different strategy. If your first plan’s not working, send in Plan B.

Five subs.

Now what?

Now our group is close. Sporting have everything to gain or lose. We have everything to gain or lose. Minnesota have everything to gain or lose. Colorado have nothing to lose. It’s going to be harsh and rough.

It didn’t even feel like we tried to win that match near the end. Everyone was tired. Subs were unused. A win would have been huge. Alas.

A bit else

Maikel Chang was my favorite Real Monarch to watch last year. He did not show well tonight. At all.

But neither did anyone else.

Except McMath. I’m not big on his distribution—at least try to get it to someone in an RSL kit—but I’m happy with his shot stopping. Clean sheets are nice.

Also, can we stop hearing about “Glad needs to prove himself blah, blah, blah”? He’s proven himself. Pay the man and build the defense around him and Herrera. Solid.

Please wear your masks as a courtesy to others.

Overreactions

Aluminum foil is the trick to removing rust. Aluminum is harder than rust oxidization but softer than steel. This means it will scrape off the rust without damaging the steel. Please send RSL some aluminum foil.

I think I’d rather not listen to Alejandro Moreno anymore.

Who is going to step up as Kyle Beckerman’s replacement? We can’t afford more matches like tonight without him, but he can’t play forever. Or can he? If no one steps up, he might just have to.

Until tonight I was coming over to the “I like this five substitution thing; maybe we should continue it going forward to add tactical strategy to the games and make the bench players worth more” crowd, but not if Freddy doesn’t make subs.