Real Salt Lake Complete Entertaining Comeback At Home
Jun 24, 2023, 9:41 PM | Updated: Jun 26, 2023, 12:53 pm
SALT LAKE CITY – Real Salt Lake pulled off a remarkable 2-2 come-from-behind draw at home to Minnesota United.
The fixture marked the third game in the last seven days and resulted in Mastroeni making eight changes to the starting XI that defeated St. Louis SC on the road midweek.
Most notably, Andres Gomez returned to the starting XI following his ankle injury and Jefferson Savarino returned from international duty and was placed on the bench.
Real Salt Lake began the fixture on the front foot and looked to be the aggressor on their home pitch. Diego Luna continued his wonderful form and was all over the attacking third creating frequent chances for the hosts.
In the 17th minute Bode Hidalgo made a run down the right side and looked to have been pulled down as he attempted to cross the ball just inside the box. The referee pointed to the spot but was waived to the VAR monitor for further review and after a long look at the footage proceeded to overturn her original ruling.
Then, Minnesota United capitalized on the fortunate break from minutes earlier when star midfielder Emmanuel Reynoso targeted the aging Bryan Oviedo, beating him on the dribble before firing in a cross that Zac MacMath attempted to glove with his right hand but failed to catch. Seconds later after the ball bounced around the six yard box Hassani Dotson rocketed his shot into the roof of the net giving the visitors the early lead.
The lead prompted Minnesota to position 11 players behind the ball, making it incredibly difficult for Real Salt Lake to penetrate the United backline.
In the 39th minute, just 12 minutes following the opening goal, S.B. Jeong’s floated cross to the back post found the left foot of Reynoso who stood all alone. The lead was doubled.
A Tail Of Two Halves
The air of the game was gone for Real Salt Lake who frustratingly entered the half time break down two goals to nil.
Mastroeni went to his bench and introduced Savarino and Danny Musovski for Maikel Chang and Gomez.
Minutes into the second half it appeared as though that Real Salt Lake found their opening goal of the game when Pablo Ruiz hit a knuckle ball from 22 yards out that nearly put a hole in the bottom right corner of the net.
However, the head referee was once again referred to the VAR monitor where she found Anderson Julio limiting the goalkeeper’s view while occupying an offside position. The goal was overturned.
Savarino had a wonderful opportunity to pinch a goal back in the 73rd minute when his right footed strike from just outside the box flashed past the far post.
The best moment of the game for Real Salt Lake came in the 78th minute when Musovski skied his shot from the penalty spot over the bar after doing all of the hard work and finding himself in a one-on-one situation.
A minute later Real Salt Lake found their breakthrough when Ruiz floated a ball onto the outstretched feet of Musovski who got rid of his opponent and calmly chipped Clint Irwin.
Kreilach, who was introduced in the 67th minute, had a wonderful chance when Justen Glad floated in a cross but Kreilach’s header flew inches wide of the far post.
Justen Glad Saves Real Salt Lake
The fourth official raised nine minutes of added time following the conclusion of the 90 minutes.
In the 97th minute Justen Glad blew the roof off America First Field when his left-footed strike found the back of the net to pinch a much needed point at home. His goal came from a wonderful pass from Braian Ojeda who picked out Luna. Luna then bounce passed a ball onto Glad’s feet.
In the dying seconds Kreilach had an opportunity to win it for Real Salt Lake but again pushed his header wide of the far post.
The draw grows Real Salt Lake’s home record to two wins, six losses, and four draws as they climb to sixth in the Western Conference and just five points shy of conference leaders LAFC.
Real Salt Lake will next travel to Toronto a week from this evening. Kickoff is slated for 5:30 p.m. on July 1st and will be broadcast via Apple TV and can be heard via The RSL Radio Network on The KSL Sports Zone.
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