Real Salt Lake 2016 Season
Going into their weekend visit to the newest soccer-specific stadium in the league, San Jose’s Aviva Stadium, Real Salt Lake still find themselves having yet to score a goal away from Rio Tinto Stadium, their home ground. Still, RSL are one of three Western Conference unbeatens, with a win and two draws in their three games.
Since making the Western Conference playoffs for their first time in 2008, Real Salt Lake have built themselves into a side to be reckoned with, reaching the conference finals four times in six years, and advancing to the MLS Cup Finals twice, in 2009 and 2013. RSL also came closer than any American side since the Los Angeles Galaxy in 2000 to winning continental honors in CONCACAF Champions League, dropping a 1-0 heartbreaker to Monterrey at home in the 2011 CCL finals (after gaining a 2-2 draw in Mexico). Throughout all this, three players have been key: Costa Rican striker Alvaro Saborio; dreadlocked midfielder Kyle Beckerman, and goalkeeper Nick Rimando. Beckerman may see Brazilian duty this summer as part of the U.S. men’s World Cup squad, and Rimando has had a share of call-ups as well.
11/25/13 - With a 5-2 aggregate advantage over the top-seeded Portland Timbers in the two-leg Western Conference finals, RSL advanced to the MLS Cup Finals for the second time in team history. It was the team’s tenth straight victory over the Timbers, who have yet to beat RSL since they joined the league. The win followed a victory over two-time defending MLS Champs, Los Angeles Galaxy in the semifinals. Salt Lake will face Sporting Kansas City December 7 for the MLS title; MLS Cup tickets start at $226.
10/22/13 – Tomorrow, Real Salt Lake will play its final regular season game of the 2013 season at Rio Tinto Stadium against Chivas USA. A win would guarantee that the RSL would not finish lower than second in the Conference, a tie no worse than third. RSL is coming off a 0-0 tie Saturday against the current first place Timbers in a playoff-type atmosphere. The club is sitting right behind Portland in the Western Conference standings and will play in its sixth straight postseason, the longest active streak in the League. The MLS Cup Playoffs schedule will be released Sunday after the final game of the regular season is played.