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-Their first home game was on April 16th 2005 at the Rice-Eccles Stadium, a 1-0 win versus the Colorado Rapids. -Real Salt Lake have two “claim to fame” moments in their history, their great run through to the Concacaf Champions League Finals in April 2011, losing to Monterrey and their biggest achievement, the 2009 MLS Cup! -Their home stadium is the Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy, Utah, a suburb of Salt Lake City, opened in October 2008 and has a capacity of 20 213. -Their head coach is Jeff Cassar, an assistant coach with the club for many years, who took over after Jason Kreis, their most successful coach in history, left the club after the 2013 campaign, becoming the head coach of the New York City FC. -In 2014, they finished the regular season 3rd in the Western Conference with a record of 15-8-11, losing to the LA Galaxy in the Conference Semi Finals (2nd Round). -They are qualified for the 2015-16 Concacaf Champions League. Players to watch for: -Goalkeeper Nick Rimando, a perennial candidate at the Goalkeeper of the Year award, Nick has made a habbit of stopping penalties when his team really needs him to do so, also a mainstay in the United States Men’s National Team. -Midfielder and Captain Kyle Beckerman, heart and soul of the team, part of the 2009 and 2011 teams that had great success, loves to control the pace in the midfield, will find a way to give service to his striker and if there is an opportunity, he is not afraid to try the goal from 30 yards out! -Striker Joao Plata, the former TFC player has really found a system where he can thrive! 17 goals in 55 games with RSL since 2013, what can I say, another former TFCer having a great career in Major League Soccer. -Defender Jamison Olave, from 2009-12 Olave was a key piece of the RSL puzzle, after a 2 years with Thierry Henry and the Red Bulls, he is back to his old stomping ground to bring back the glory to the RioT. Here is a look at their full roster from earlier this season No. Position Player Nation 1 Goalkeeper Lalo Fernández Mexico 2 Defender Tony Beltran United States 3 Defender Phanuel Kavita (HGP) Democratic Republic of the Congo 4 Defender Jámison Olave Colombia 5 Midfielder Kyle Beckerman (Captain; DP) United States 6 Defender Boyd Okwuonu United States 7 Midfielder Jordan Allen (HGP) United States 8 Forward Joao Plata (DP) Ecuador 10 Midfielder Luis Gil (GA) United States 11 Midfielder Javier Morales Argentina 12 Defender Elías Vásquez http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/e/ec/Flag_of_Guatemala.svg/23px-Flag_of_Guatemala.svg.png Guatemala 13 Forward Olmes García http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/2/21/Flag_of_Colombia.svg/23px-Flag_of_Colombia.svg.png Colombia 14 Defender Justen Glad (HGP) http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/a/a4/Flag_of_the_United_States.svg/23px-Flag_of_the_United_States.svg.png United States 15 Forward Álvaro Saborío http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/f/f2/Flag_of_Costa_Rica.svg/23px-Flag_of_Costa_Rica.svg.png Costa Rica 16 Midfielder Pecka http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/0/05/Flag_of_Brazil.svg/22px-Flag_of_Brazil.svg.png Brazil 17 Defender Demar Phillips http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/0/0a/Flag_of_Jamaica.svg/23px-Flag_of_Jamaica.svg.png Jamaica 18 Goalkeeper Nick Rimando http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/a/a4/Flag_of_the_United_States.svg/23px-Flag_of_the_United_States.svg.png United States 19 Midfielder Luke Mulholland http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/b/be/Flag_of_England.svg/23px-Flag_of_England.svg.png England 21 Defender Aaron Maund http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/a/a4/Flag_of_the_United_States.svg/23px-Flag_of_the_United_States.svg.png United States 23 Forward Sebastián Jaime (DP) http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/1/1a/Flag_of_Argentina.svg/23px-Flag_of_Argentina.svg.png Argentina 24 Goalkeeper Jeff Attinella http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/a/a4/Flag_of_the_United_States.svg/23px-Flag_of_the_United_States.svg.png United States 26 Midfielder Adolfo Ovalle (HGP) http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/a/a4/Flag_of_the_United_States.svg/23px-Flag_of_the_United_States.svg.png United States 27 Midfielder John Stertzer http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/a/a4/Flag_of_the_United_States.svg/23px-Flag_of_the_United_States.svg.png United States 28 Defender Chris Schuler http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/a/a4/Flag_of_the_United_States.svg/23px-Flag_of_the_United_States.svg.png United States 29 Defender Abdoulie Mansally http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/7/77/Flag_of_The_Gambia.svg/23px-Flag_of_The_Gambia.svg.png Gambia 49 Forward Devon Sandoval http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/a/a4/Flag_of_the_United_States.svg/23px-Flag_of_the_United_States.svg.png United States 50 Midfielder Sebastian Saucedo (HGP) http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/a/a4/Flag_of_the_United_States.svg/23px-Flag_of_the_United_States.svg.png United States Graphic and Images Sources: Wikipedia
THE GOOD David Ousted Gets Another Clean Sheet Sure I could have picked Darren Mattocks because he scored the game winning goal. I could have picked Matias Laba for his brilliant play clogging up the midfield. Or I could have picked Kendall Waston for shutting down all RSL forwards in the defensive box. They were all excellent but I picked Ousted because he has been solid all season and he continued his dominant performance and got his third clean sheet in four games on the road this season. With all the road woes this team has had since joining MLS, this season's road success is critical. These points could mean the difference between fighting for the last playoff spot in the last game at the end of the season again to sitting comfortably in the second or third spot in the standings and getting a home playoff date. Maybe even more. Ousted made four saves. They weren't amazing saves but he always seems to do just enough to make sure that the team in front of him has that chance to win. Yeah they wait until the last minutes and it's not always pretty, but an ugly win is worth just as much in the standings as a pretty win. That is all you can ask from your starting keeper. THE AVERAGE Octavio Rivero's Past Two Games Don't sound the panic alarms, but Rivero hasn't scored in two straight games! Of course there will be times this season where Rivero has these type of games, but even though he isn't scoring he is still contributing to the team with all the other aspects of his game. He is holding the ball up well, still making dangerous runs in the box and always showing hustle on the pitch. This is something we haven't seen with the other strikers Vancouver has and have had since joining MLS. Even though he hasn't gotten the service he has wanted the last two games he is still making those runs off the defender's shoulders time and time again. It's not his fault that his teammates aren't giving him the ball on his run. He showed frustration a few times in this game when Darren Mattocks or Sam Adekugbe had their heads down and didn't see him making a run into the box, missing the chance to make the pass. Even with all these missed opportunities he is still trying and running his heart out for this team. THE BAD Sam Adekugbe The Whitecaps improve to 5W-0L-1D with Adekugbe in the starting line up this season. He has shown he has the ability to get up into the play down the flank and get involved in the offense. This game was no different for the young player. The problem in this game was he looked rushed on all his crosses. He didn't take his time to make sure he got a decent serviceable ball into the box. Time after time the RSL defenders were stepping in and knocking the ball out before it could make in anywhere close to a Whitecaps player. With this only being his 11th MLS game he is still learning and will only get better with time. He also turned the ball over a few too many times for my liking. He seemed to play every ball a few yards too far ahead or too far behind the player he was looking for. He needs to play the ball through his midfield more. He kept trying to go over the top and down the wing straight to Rivero and Mattocks. When you have players like Laba, Russell Teibert and Gershon Koffie to play through, that is usually the best option.