Mastroeni: ‘Important To Get Back To Processes’ Amid RSL’s Losing Streak

Apr 7, 2023, 11:35 AM | Updated: 11:36 am

SALT LAKE CITYReal Salt Lake manager Pablo Mastroeni said it’s critical for his team to get back to the basics amid the club’s four-game losing streak.

The former Major League Soccer player discussed the current state of RSL during an interview on KSL Sports Zone’s DJ & PK on Friday, April 7.

During the conversation, Mastroeni told David James that it’s important for his team to focus on their processes after losing four consecutive matches.

“In these moments, I think it’s important to get back to the processes that we have,” Mastroeni told James. “People, culture, preparation, and doubling down on those things cause those are the things that you can control on a daily and those are the only things that can affect the next performance.”

Following a 2-1 victory over Vancouver Whitecaps FC in the 2023 season opener on February 25, Real Salt Lake has only tasted defeat. The club has been outscored 12-1 during its current losing skid.

The RSL manager was asked about his team’s level of confidence after multiple poor performances.

“When you operate from a place of you know, you believe, then the rest of the body will execute whatever the mind thinks and that’s why confidence and that’s why belief is so great. That’s why I focus so much on it with our team,” Mastroeni told Patrick Kinahan. “If you’re a professional soccer player, you have all the skill sets to achieve what you want.

RELATED: Despite Recent Results Real Salt Lake Remains Calm, For Now

“What ends up happening is a team essentially becomes individuals in tough times.”

Mastroeni continued by saying that it’s easy for fear to creep in when you’re not taking advantage of the opportunities presented on the pitch.

“It’s not just conceding but it’s also not finishing the chance that you get to like change the momentum and the psychology of our opponents as well,” Mastroeni said. “Not only are you playing against yourself, you’re playing against an opponent. And so if you don’t capture that one goal and the other team scores, then you start reliving your fears of the previous game.”

“There’s two things that kill teams and cultures, and it’s the fear of failure, and it’s the fear of judgment. Failure and judgment are two things that are understood in sport, right? At times you fail and every day you’re judged but the fear of those things is what robs you of confidence and belief.”

Mastroeni highlighted that his team has outperformed what the statistics have said in recent seasons and that RSL needs to get back to that. The manager said Real Salt Lake needs to return to thriving at the intangibles.

The club is refocusing on its processes and beliefs rather than taking a tactical approach. The hope is that RSL’s confidence will bounce back by going to the basics.

“The confidence piece and ‘how do you get that?’ That’s the Holy Grail of sport,” Mastroeni said.

To hear Mastroeni’s entire conversation on DJ & PK, check out the audio player above.

RSL currently sits in 11th place in the Western Conference standings with only three points and a 1-0-4 record this season. The club is one of five MLS teams with three points.

Real Salt Lake’s next match is at home against Charlotte FC on Saturday, April 8. The game will begin at 7:30 p.m. (MDT) and will be broadcast on Apple TV+ via MLS Season Pass and KSL Sports Zone.

Charlotte has earned five points with a 1-2-3 record through six matches.

Listen to DJ & PK Weekdays from 6-10 a.m. (MDT) on KSL Sports Zone and the KSL Sports app. For recent episodes of the show check out the DJ & PK podcast.

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Mastroeni: ‘Important To Get Back To Processes’ Amid RSL’s Losing Streak