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Real Salt Lake Hoping To Continue Momentum Against Toronto FC

Toronto FC forward Jozy Altidore (17) celebrates his second goal with teammate Jonathan Osorio (21) during first-half MLS soccer game action against Real Salt Lake in Toronto, Friday, March 30, 2018. (Frank Gunn/The Canadian Press via AP)

SANDY, Utah – Real Salt Lake will return to Rio Tinto Stadium this Friday as they prepare to host Toronto FC. The match is scheduled to kick off at 1 p.m. which will be the first early afternoon game of the season.

Last week, RSL beat Colorado in a nail biter, eventually winning 3-2 thanks to a Sam Johnson game winner in the 53rd minute and a Andrew Putna penalty save in the 58th.

The History

Mar 30, 2018: TOR 3 – 1 RSL @ BMO Field
Mar 4, 2017: RSL 0 – 0 TOR @ Rio Tinto Stadium
Aug 3, 2016: TOR 1 – 0 RSL @ BMO Field
Mar 29, 2015: RSL 2 – 1 TOR @ Rio Tinto Stadium
Mar 29, 2014: RSL 3 – 0 TOR @ Rio Tinto Stadium

Toronto F.C.

Toronto currently sits in 6th place in the Eastern Conference with 17 points next to their name. After a fast start to the season, which included 10 points throughout their first four games, they have since found themselves scrambling for wins as they have not won an MLS game in the last three attempts. Their last victory came on May 4th at Orlando City.

Remarkably, against D.C. United this past Wednesday evening, Toronto was unable to find the back of the net despite mustering 35 shots. The game eventually ended 0-0 while Toronto dominated every statistical category.

Headlined by Jozy Altidore and Alejandro Pozuelo who have both scored five goals on the year, Toronto’s attack is formidable.

However, Altidore has been injury riddled this season. According to MLSSoccer.com, Altidore is dealing with a heel injury that has kept him out of Toronto’s 18 the past five games. He is unlikely to return against Real Salt Lake this weekend.

Jordon Hamilton has taken over Altidore’s duties as the starting striker, Hamilton currently has scored 3 goals for Toronto this season.

Alejandro Pozuelo also leads the team in assists, with 6. Two assists clear of Jonathan Osorio who sits on 4.

Thus far, Toronto has scored 22 goals and conceded 17 for a goal differential of plus-5.

Toronto’s style of play is an unusual 3-5-1-1 formation under Greg Vanney, but have for years been a powerhouse in the East. Vanney has been in charge of Toronto since 2014 and has taken the club to unseen heights that included a sensational CONCACAAF Champions League run that ended in a 4-2 penalty kick loss to Club Deportivo Guadalajara in the final.

RSL Injury Update

During this weeks “The Lions Den” podcast, Matt Gaschk, Director of Public Relations and web content for RSL, spoke on the current injuries at the club.

Nick Rimando and Everton Luiz have both taken part in full training after suffering knee injuries, their status is still up in the air for Saturday’s showdown.

Kyle Beckerman and Tony Beltran are unavailable and have not trained with the main group this week.

Broadcast Info

The match against Toronto F.C. will kick off at 1 p.m. on Saturday.

The game can be streamed live on KSLSports.com or on the KSL TV app.

Podcasts

KSLSports.com, in collaboration with Real Salt Lake, has launched a new podcast, The RSL Lion’s Den. It is the official Real Salt Lake podcast for all club news and updates. KSL Sports analysts Tom Hackett and Spencer Warne, along with RSL PR director Matt Gashck break down the games and discuss important club matters.

To listen to The Lion’s Den, click here. It is available on iTunes, Google Play or wherever podcasts are found. Please rate and subscribe to The Lion’s Den for all things Real Salt Lake.

Head coach Mike Petke and TV analyst Brian Dunseth have launched a new podcast titled Off The Chest. The duo discuss all matters of the world game in a entertaining and informative podcast that will be sure to make you laugh.