Real Salt Lake seeks to bounce back against visiting San Jose Saturday after falling to the No. 2 spot in MLS standings last Friday.
The Claret-and-Cobalt warmly welcome the Earthquakes, a western conference foe whom it abused twice in as many matches already this season. The first victory, a 2-0 outing in San Jose, came all the way back on March 3. RSL got the best of the Earthquakes again when they met in Rio Tinto Stadium on June 1.
In its most recent defeat at the hands of Seattle Sounders FC, Real Salt Lake dropped out of the league’s top spot while surrendering it to the team that beat them. With five games remaining in the regular season, it looks to regain dominance and play with the force and control that didn’t make it to Seattle with the rest of the guys last week.
“It’s important how we react,” RSL head coach Jason Kreis said. “The truth of the matter is, I thought we got out-competed and I felt we had a lot of players that had poor games… with the ball, and it’s atypical so I think we can brush it off. We need to get back to work this week, work extremely hard and get ourselves prepared for San Jose.”
Part of that preparation includes getting the league-leading offense back on track. The squad from Salt Lake seemed to play with magical cleats in its previous three matches, notching 11 goals in three games prior to Saturday’s battle in Seattle. Rather than continue its streak, the team was held to three shots on target.
RSL lost back-to-back games only once this season with defeats to Kansas City and the New York Red Bulls at the end of August. San Jose defeated the Montreal Impact 3-0 with a two-goal, second half performance on Tuesday night.
This will be the final regular season clash between the two clubs. Kickoff is scheduled for 7 p.m. MDT at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy, Utah and will be televised on CW30 in the Salt Lake area and by radio on ESPN 700.