Real Salt Lake, Timbers Play To Scoreless Draw In Midweek Clash
May 17, 2023, 11:07 PM
(Photo by Laura Dearden/Real Salt Lake)
SALT LAKE CITY – Real Salt Lake played, yet another, scoreless draw against the Portland Timbers at America First Field.
It marked the fourth consecutive MLS fixture in which Real Salt Lake failed to score a goal.
The Real Salt Lake Scoring Drought Continues
The fixture was delayed in half an hour prior to kickoff due to thunderstorms in the area. It was scheduled to start at 7:30 p.m. but did not kick off until 9:12 p.m.
Manager Pablo Mastroeni made a handful of changes following the 3-0 loss to LAFC last weekend as he introduced Bode Hidalgo, Emeka Eneli, Maikel Chang, and Anderson Julio to the starting XI.
— Real Salt Lake (@realsaltlake) May 18, 2023
All the talk prior to kickoff surrounded Real Salt Lake’s inability to score goals. The club has not scored a goal in its previous three fixtures, despite picking up two draws in the process.
Interestingly, Rubio Rubin was sent to the bench and was not used throughout the entirety of the match.
The opening quarter of an hour was dominated by Real Salt Lake who controlled the possession and forced the Timbers backline to retreat deep into its own territory. Portland then began to find the speed of the game and put together some passages of pretty soccer.
However, the opening half consisted of very little goal scoring opportunities from both sides.
It wasn’t until the 57th minute when Zac MacMath was forced to make a big diving save with his left palm that kept the score level.
Shortly thereafter, Mastroeni made the first move of the game when he introduced Bryan Oviedo and Bertin Jacquesson for Hidalgo and Julio respectively.
Savarino came within inches in the 73rd minute when his free kick from 28 yards sailed wide of the right post. Timbers goalkeeper Aljaž Ivačič stood still as he watched the ball fly past the woodwork.
A minute later, Portland substitute Dairon Asprilla nearly gave the visitors the lead when his shot from 20 yards out flew by the left post.
As the second half progressed, the game began to open up and both sides enjoyed a lot of space in their respective attacking thirds.
Real Salt Lake was granted another free-kick following a foul on Braian Ojeda 19 yards out. Chang’s attempt was easily tipped over the bar by Ivačič.
Much to the frustration of the brave fans that bore the earlier thunderstorm, the match finished in a scoreless draw. The third for Real Salt Lake in its previous four fixtures.
Boo’s echoed throughout the stadium as the final whistle blew.
Real Salt Lake next travels to Colorado for a date with their rivals this upcoming Saturday, May 20. Kickoff is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. and will be available to watch via Apple TV and heard via the RSL Radio Network on the KSL Sports Zone (97.5 FM & 1280 AM).
The Rapids recently lost 4-0 on the road to Atlanta this evening and sit one spot below, but tied on points (12), with Real Salt Lake.
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