Real Salt Lake Tasked With Reigning MLS Cup Champions On Short Rest As Games Begin To Dwindle

Oct 6, 2020, 1:00 PM
Real Salt Lake - Seattle Sounders...
Aaron Herrera #22 of Real Salt Lake and Jordan Morris #13 of Seattle Sounders battle for possession during the first half of the match at CenturyLink Field on October 23, 2019 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Alika Jenner/Getty Images)
(Photo by Alika Jenner/Getty Images)

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – Real Salt Lake is running out of time as the 2020 campaign only involves eight more regular-season games before the much-anticipated playoffs begin.

This year, the race to make the playoffs is tightly contested with just 12 points separating the best team in the Western Conference from the worst.

RSL has had patches throughout the season in which they have looked like the best team in Major league Soccer. But they have also had matches when they looked deflated, uninterested and low on energy.

The last match against LAFC was a game that did not excite the RSL faithful as the team lost at home to a Diego Rossi led LAFC 3-1.

No Rusnak, No Creativity?

Furthermore, RSL is struggling with injuries and players being unavailable. Albert Rusnak will miss five of the remaining eight games as he has been called into the Slovakian National Team as they attempt to qualify for the 2021 EURO’s against Ireland.

Rusnak’s presence will be missed. But his absence will provide opportunities for other players to step up and help fill the void left by Rusnak. Damir Kreilach will likely get more minutes playing the number 10 position. Pablo Ruiz will have more time to push forward and create with his left foot. When Rusnak plays, generally the ball always goes through him, but with him now not available, RSL will look for other outlets to provide as an attacking threat.

Incoming Seattle Sounders

The Seattle Sounders is currently the best team in the Western Conference. RSL, on just a few day’s notice, will be tasked with preparing to go on the road and limit the firepower that the Sounders possess.

“It is incredibly difficult to get the guys ready on such short notice. Tactically you cannot overload them, but making sure their legs are ready and they are mentally prepared are the two toughest challenges for me,” manager Freddy Juarez said.

Seattle may have the best front four in all of MLS. The combination of Roldan, Lodeiro, Morris and Rudiaz causes headaches for opposing teams. Combined they have scored 22 goals this season while adding 18 assists.

“They (Seattle) have a very impressive attacking core and we will need to be on top of our game to get a result,” Justen Glad said regarding the attacking players of Seattle ahead of the match.

“We cannot turn the ball over in silly parts of the pitch and we have to capitalize in front of goal. We cannot win matches without scoring,” RSL’s left-back Donny Toia said during his press conference prior to the trip to Seattle.

RSL is short at the center back position as well with Nedum Onuoha struggling to return to full fitness following a minor hamstring strain. It is unknown if Onuoha will be available for selection for the midweek fixture against Seattle.

Fortunately, Justen Glad will return to the starting XI following his one-game yellow card accumulation suspension.

While the attack for Seattle is as dangerous as it gets, scoring goals against them is no easy feat either. Stefan Frei has developed into one of the league’s best goalkeepers. He has four clean sheets next to his name already this season.

Match Info

The Seattle Sounders will host RSL on Wednesday, September 7th with kick-off scheduled for 8 p.m.

The match can be watched on or on the KSL TV app.





  • Real Salt Lake Scoreboard

  • Real Salt Lake Team Leaders

  • Real Salt Lake Standings

Real Salt Lake

Rice-Eccles Stadium...
Brian Preece

Teams Across Utah Celebrate Independence Day On Social Media

On the Fourth of July teams and programs across the state took to social media to honor the signing of our Declaration of Independence.
20 hours ago
Photo courtesy: Laura Dearden of Real Salt Lake....
Tom Hackett

Real Salt Lake Fall To Minnesota United Over Independence Weekend

Real Salt Lake lost to Minnesota United at Allianz Field as attacking woes continue following Bobby Wood's injury.
2 days ago
Anderson Julio - Real Salt Lake...
Kyle Ireland

Anderson Julio Gives RSL Life Against Minnesota United FC

Real Salt Lake forward Anderson Julio gave his club life in the second half with a big goal against Minnesota United FC.
2 days ago
Jefferson Savarino vs. Minnesota...
Kyle Ireland

Savarino Pulls One Back For RSL During Second Half Against Minnesota

Jefferson Savarino pulled one back for Real Salt Lake during the second half of the club's match against Minnesota United FC.
2 days ago
Rubio Rubin - RSL vs. Minnesota United...
Tom Hackett

Real Salt Lake Travel To Minnesota With Hope Of Finding Attacking Chemistry

Real Salt Lake will continue to search for an attacking partnership against Minnesota following Bobby Wood's injury.
4 days ago
Everton Luiz #25 of Real Salt Lake drives past Javier Aquino #20 of UANL Tigres during a quarterfin...
Tom Hackett

Real Salt Lake To Host Liga MX Atlas FC In Leagues Cup Showcase

Real Salt Lake will host Atlas FC for the first time in club history.
5 days ago
Real Salt Lake Tasked With Reigning MLS Cup Champions On Short Rest As Games Begin To Dwindle