As with most Real Salt Lake games this season, the first half was slow and fairly uneventful. The most notable thing was Carlos Salcedo making his first start. Salcedo came through the RSL academy and is the first academy product to play in an MLS game with the senior team. Salcedo earned his first yellow card of his professional career in the 37th minute with a dangerous high boot to New England’s Chris Tierney.
New England seemed content with sitting back and defending in the first half, but RSL put on subs Sebastian Velasquez and Olmes Garcia to spark the attack, which they did! New England came out strong in the second half. RSL defender, Chris Schuler, went in for the challenge, missing the ball, and allowing Kelyn Rowe to send a cross in to Ryan Guy who volleyed it past Nick Rimando to score the game’s opening goal.
Real finally put themselves onto the board when Velasquez took a shot which Bobby Shuttleworth parried into the path of a lurking Devon Sandoval. Devon power slid the ball past Shuttleworth, pulling his team onto level terms.
From a corner, Javier Morales picked out Kyle Beckerman at the top of New England’s 18 yard box. RSL’s captain did a good job of keeping his volley on frame forcing Shuttleworth into another athletic save. However, it once again fell into the path of an RSL player. This time Olmes Garcia, in a similar fashion as Sandoval’s goal, somehow managed to turn and get a shot off while falling backwards. RSL were up 2-1!
The game got even more intense in stoppage time. A New England free kick caused confusion in the box, and the referee gave Carlos Salcedo a second yellow for a handball even though he wasn’t actually even involved in the play. It was Tony Beltran who had his arm somewhat extended and a soft penalty was called against Real.
As Saer Sene stepped up to take the PK, the fans in the stadium were the loudest they had been all night, urging their team to get the draw. As Sene powered the ball low to the right, Nick Rimando did what Nick Rimando does and saved it! All you could hear in the stadium was the RSL players celebrating with Rimando.
RSL travel to Canada to take on Montreal this Saturday.