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What we’re watching in Real Salt Lake vs. Sporting Kansas City

RSL are back at Rio Tinto Stadium and face an old rival

Lucas Muller | RSL Soapbox

Real Salt Lake ended 2020 on a down note, losing 2-0 to Sporting Kansas City at home. 2021 has started off better, with an unexpected win against Minnesota United on the road. RSL now face SKC once again, at home again, with hopes a littler higher than they were at the end of last year. Can Real’s new attack get the job done against Kansas City?

The forwards

Anderson Julio and Rubio Rubin were RSL’s two most impressive players against Minnesota. I think everyone is waiting to see if the new duo can provide as much spark to the team as they did last weekend. Will we see the same lineup this week? Probably, which would mean Damir at the ten, with Rusnak and Julio on the wings, and Rubin as the center forward. If it works against SKC, that could be a very promising sign for 2021.

The keeper

20 year old goal keeper David Ochoa sent waves through Major League Soccer after he booted a ball into the stands when the final whistle was blown by the ref. He left fans and pundits divided with that kick. He’ll be a major focus of this game, and almost more so if he doesn’t play. Will we see any antics from him in this game?

The RioT

Ten thousand fans will fill Rio Tinto Stadium, at least to nearly 50% capacity. Those available seats are all but sold out at this point. What will the atmosphere be like as people are allowed back in greater numbers? The club put in some strict rules to help enforce mask wearing, which is especially important given the increased numbers. It should be a sunny and warm day. How will this new setup compare to pre-covid times?

Injury report

No players injured

Predicted lineup