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The Knee Jerk: RSL vs Austin FC

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MLS: Real Salt Lake at Austin FC Scott Wachter-USA TODAY Sports

RSL had ten, maybe fifteen, minutes of quality soccer this afternoon.

Then there was atrocious passing, poor midfield control, and a lot of turnovers. A defense that continues to disappoint.

All against the Western Conference’s worst team with no realistic playoff hopes.

Mastoeni made some decent substitutions that almost put RSL back into the match, but then Josh Wolf countered and took all of the coal out of the steam engine.

It was a flat performance. Boring. Uninspired. Julio was alive and everywhere, Rubin subbed in and made a difference, but we caught Ruiz on one of his backswings of form. The team connections were off all night, and Austin capitalized on our mistakes and sloppy ball work.

We’re staring down at it right now, at that point where RSL’s playoff hopes come down to how other teams in the Western Conference play. We’re not there yet, but this loss to Austin might just put us on that path. It’s still firmly in our own hands. That could be lost.

With so many on this team contributing goals—that’s when RSL is historically at its best—we might just be alright getting into the playoffs.

But not with boring, sloppy play like today.

Overreactions

Simple fundamentals were missing today: move around, find space, pass to a teammate. Don’t just kick the ball. Put it somewhere useful.

Is, um, Pablo Mastroeni a ruminant? Every shot of him he looks like he’s chewing his cud.

I enjoyed Dunny’s Rancid drops today, so please Stand Your Ground with me, Sidekick. RSL needs to act more like the Hyena and fight for their lion’s share if they plan to avoid the Bloodclot, Junkie Man, Hooligans, Poison, and Coppers on the Journey to the End of The East Bay to enjoy an East Bay Night. So Let’s Go in this 11th Hour and avoid a Backslide on Another Night against the San Jose Earthquakes (Life Won’t Wait for me to tie this to the East Bay). I Am the One who thinks they should do an International Cover-Up for Bob (a cover, see!?), not step on a Rattlesnake, and Make it Out Alive to listen to Radio Havana on the Radio. Who Would’ve Thought that my Nihilism would Let Me Go on a Collision Course with Cocktails—yeah, alright. I’m finished. Don’t be Disgruntled 7 Years Down the road on your way to Olympia, WA. (I firmly believe that ...And Out Come the Wolves is the greatest single album ever recorded. So enjoy the show tonight if you’re going to be there! I’ll be Listed MIA out here in Salem, OR).