Real Salt Lake are in a desperate fight for a playoff spot. The middle of the western conference table is very close, with seven teams in the mix for the final four playoff places. RSL are currently just below the playoff line in 8th, but should they win this game and their final game of the season (home against Portland), they’ll secure a playoff spot.
This has been the teams number one struggle all season. With only Bobby Wood and Dami Kreilach on the injury list, they represent two major source of goals. RSL have scored just one goal in their last four league games. We did see Chang get his first goal involvement in a while in the team’s loss to Cincinnati, but RSL will need something more from Cordova, Meram, and Savarino in order to find success. The experiment with Sava in the middle simply isn’t working, and with a regression in Cordova’s finishing, RSL are in a tough position.
The real question is if Aaron Herrera, who scored a 70 yard wonder goal against Atlas in the Leagues Cup, can do it again.
Luna on the rise
Diego Luna has been a bright spot for RSL during a time when the team is struggling. He’s a player for the future, but he can contribute now. One of the best things he can do is free up Jefferson Savarino to play on the right wing, where Sava is at his best. Regardless of where Luna plays, his minutes will be a sign of Mastroeni’s level of trust in the young player.
Zac MacMath’s resurgence has been a pleasant surprise to this season, especially given the drama and exit of David Ochoa. He’s a keeper who is certainly talented but he struggles with passing and distribution. This has hurt the team at several points in the season, and an away game to the Galaxy means it is critical to not make those mistakes. MacMath has the benefit of a good defense in front of him, and that has contributed to his success this year.
Out: Bobby Wood, Damir Kreliach