REAL SALT LAKE

Marcelo Silva, Pablo Ruiz, Starring As Real Salt Lake Continues Upward Climb

May 2, 2022, 5:14 PM
Photo courtesy: Laura Dearden of Real Salt Lake....
Photo courtesy: Laura Dearden of Real Salt Lake.

SALT LAKE CITY – Marcelo Silva and Pablo Ruiz are best friends off the pitch and it just so happens that the duo are also starring on the pitch for Real Salt Lake in 2022.

There is an argument to be made that either Silva or Ruiz, or both, have been Real Salt Lake’s best player(s) throughout the opening 10 games of the season.

Matured Marcelo Silva

Silva, who has worn the captain’s armband on multiple occasions due to the injury status of Damir Kreilach, has looked like a completely different player from years past. Previously, Silva has been criticized by the fanbase and media members for occasionally making very irrational decisions.

Fortunately, for Silva and the RSL faithful, that has all changed under the guidance of Manager Pablo Mastroeni.

“He is a very emotional person. He wears his heart on his sleeve. I think when you really care about your teammates, and you realize that times in the past that it felt like he was making decisions for himself where now he is making decisions for the team,” Mastroeni said. “I think that perspective is a big part of why Marcelo [Silva] has been so valuable for our group. He is making great decisions for the team and not himself and I think that is what a captain does, that is what a leader does,” he added.

Pablo “The Orchestrator” Ruiz

Silva’s best friend Pablo Ruiz has also transformed his game under Mastroeni’s leadership. This season, Ruiz has controlled countless games through his ability to pass the ball on the ground and through the air. Frequently, Real Salt Lake looks for Ruiz to distribute the ball, he orchestrates almost every build-up in the attacking half and is paramount to the success of Real Salt Lake.

SofaScore, a world-leading data analytics company, currently ranks Ruiz as the ninth-best player in Major League Soccer with a rating of 7.43. Carles Gil of the New England Revolution leads the list averaging a 7.98 rating per game. No other Real Salt Lake player is listed inside the top 50.

FotMob, another leading data analytics company, lists Pablo Ruiz as the number one player in the league when it comes to creating big chances, he has seven to his name.

Wall Of The Wasatch

Another player who is having a breakthrough year for Real Salt Lake is Zac MacMath who started the season following an injury to last year’s starting goalkeeper David Ochoa. MacMath has notched the third-best save percentage, saves per 90 minutes, and goals prevented, only behind Minnesota United goalkeeper Dayne St. Clair and Philadelphia Union shot-stopper Andre Blake.

Next Match

Real Salt Lake travels to Nashville SC next weekend. Kickoff is slated for 3 p.m. on Sunday, May 8.

As always, the match will be available to stream via the KSL Sports and KSL 5 TV apps or on KSL Sports dot com.

 

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