Despite Loss RSL Played Well Against LAFC

Mar 23, 2019, 11:18 PM
Courtesy of RSL...
Courtesy of RSL

LOS ANGELES, Calif. – There were tons of positives to take away after Real Salt Lake’s 2-1 loss to LAFC.

Going into the matchup, manager Mike Petke was asking a lot of his team. RSL was missing a ton of key players for different reasons. Valuable pieces like Albert Rusnak, Corey Baird and Sam Johnson were away with international duty. The team started an MLS-record six Homegrown Players as a result.

To make matters worse, they were to face LAFC in one of the hardest places to play at Banc of California Stadium.

And they nearly stuck away with a point, had it not been for a blazing goal by LAFC’s Walker Zimmerman in stoppage time to give the home team a 2-1 decision.

Kreilach Scores A Classy Goal

Early on, it was clear that RSL was facing a significantly more experience team as they were on their back foot quite often. The game plan seemed to be to work off the counter attack, something that wasn’t too effective throughout the match.

In the 35th minute, RSL had a chance to take an early lead when they drew a penalty in the box which led to a penalty kick by Damir Kreilach.

He buried it easily. All class.

It looked like RSL would be headed for Petke’s marquee road win, something that has eluded the head coach throughout his tenure.

Game Marred By Controversy

However, the officials got involved with some interesting and conflicting calls.

Just before halftime, LAFC’s Diego Rossi scored after a deflected pass came his way. Rossi took the opportunity and buried the ball into the net to tie the game up at 1-1.

Later on, in the second half, Sebastian Saucedo scored after a deflected fell his way which he took and fired into the frame.

Not so fast however.

It was ruled that Saucedo was offsides prior to the pass and the goal was waved off, something that seemed to be in conflict with Rossi’s goal, which came in a similar fashion.

An explanation for the discrepancy is still yet to come.

Game Slips Away Late

Regardless, RSL battled and it seemed that they had a chance at coming away with a point with a draw on the road.

Unfortunately RSL defender Justin Portillo was given a red card in the 84th minute, forcing his team to play man-down the rest of the way.

LAFC took advantage of the man advantage and stole the game in stoppage time thanks to a brilliant shot by Walker Zimmerman. There was nothing that RSL goalkeeper Nick Rimando could have done to stop the fateful goal from crossing the line.

Despite the disappointing finish, it was still one of the grittiest performances on the road to date from a Mike Petke-coached club.

RSL deserved a point, but it didn’t happen.

Oh well, on to the next.

Next Up

Real Salt Lake will next host FC Dallas on March 30.

RSL games are streamed for free on and the KSL TV app.


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