George Frey / CONCACAF

Notes & Quotes - RSL 4 : 1 CLB (CCL QF-2)

REAL SALT LAKE POSTS 4-1 WIN OVER COLUMBUS,

ADVANCES TO CHAMPIONS LEAGUE SEMIFINALS

Midfielders Javier Morales and Andy Williams Pace Potent RSL Attack in Decisive Second Leg Showdown in Sandy;

Utah Side Makes History by Becoming First MLS Team to Qualify for Champions League’s “Final Four”

 

SANDY, Utah (Tuesday, March 1, 2011)Real Salt Lake captured another piece of Major League Soccer history Tuesday night in front of an enthusiastic crowd of 15,405 at Rio Tinto Stadium via a 4-1 victory over the Columbus Crew in the second and decisive leg of their CONCACAF Champions League Quarterfinal Series. The 4-1 result, which gave RSL the aggregate series win by the same margin, allowed the Utah side to become the first MLS squad to advance to the Semifinal Round of the regional club championship.

The scoreless draw in the opening leg last Tuesday was put well in the rear-view mirror in the early stages tonight, as both teams came out looking for the goal – or goals – that would secure advancement into the tournament’s “Final Four.” However, only Real Salt Lake would be rewarded for its attacking efforts in the opening half, as FW Álvaro Saborío’s opening salvo in the 23rd minute capped off a wonderful build-up through the middle of the field, as did MF Javier Morales’ first of the evening 13 minutes later, allowing RSL a 2-0 cushion – and just a bit of breathing room – at the half.

That two-goal advantage was short-lived out of the locker room, as Crew striker Andres Mendoza finished off some nice interplay for the visitors around the area just four minutes into the second stanza, keeping the crowd on the edge of their seats for most of the half. It would be Morales once again taking the advantage to two goals in the 77th minute, as his finish off a FW Paulo Jr. dish would allow the home side to breathe a little easier. If the Argentine’s second of the night was the nail in the coffin, then Andy Williams’ free kick in the dying moments was the cherry on top, the curling, 22-yard bomb giving the midfielder a deserved goal to go along with his pair of assists on the evening.

Click here for the MLSsoccer.com recap of tonight's Second Leg in Sandy

Click here to visit CONCACAF.com for tonight’s match highlights

Real Salt Lake Match Notes

  • Real Salt Lake will now turn its focus to Thursday’s second leg of the Quarterfinal series between CD Saprissa (Costa Rica) and CD Olimpia (Honduras), in which Saprissa will carry a 1-0 aggregate lead into their away leg in San Pedro Sula (6:00 p.m. MT, live on Galavision). RSL will host the winner of that Central American showdown in Sandy for the first leg of the CCL Semifinal series on Tuesday, March 15. Tickets for that contest are now available online at www.RealSaltLake.com, over the phone at 801-727-2700, or in person at the Rio Tinto Stadium Box Office, Monday-Saturday from 10:00 a.m.-6:00 p.m. MT.
  • Center back Chris Schuler made a surprise start on the RSL backline for the suspended Nat Borchers, the second-year man out of Creighton playing a sturdy 90 minutes alongside Jamison Olave. The minutes were Schuler’s first since suffering a broken bone in his right foot during a training session late last September.
  • Both Borchers and fellow defender Tony Beltran will be available for selection for the March 15 contest after sitting out of tonight’s affair due to red cards received in the opening leg at Columbus. In fact, RSL Head Coach Jason Kreis will have his full complement of players available when the Semifinal series kicks off in Sandy in two weeks’ time.
  • The opening goal by Saborío gave the RSL target man his seventh goal of the competition in six appearances, placing him third on the CCL’s 2010/11 goal-scoring chart. Only the Cruz Azul duo of Javier Orozco (12) and Emanuel Villa (8) have more tallies in the competition than RSL’s 28-year-old Costa Rican international.
  • While assists are not kept in the official statistics by CONCACAF, tonight’s pair of helpers by Williams raised his team-high count in the category in CCL play to five.
  • Tuesday's result kept in tact Real Salt Lake's now 34-match home undefeated streak across all competitions at its fortress of Rio Tinto Stadium, a run that dates back 21 months to May 2009 (last loss: 5/16/09, 0-2 L v. KC). The run includes 25 MLS regular season contests, 4 CONCACAF Champions League matches, 3 international friendlies and 2 MLS Cup Playoff showdowns.

 

CONCACAF CHAMPIONS LEAGUE – QUARTERFINAL ROUND, LEG TWO

REAL SALT LAKE 4 : 1 COLUMBUS CREW (2:0)

REAL SALT LAKE WINS SERIES 4-1 ON AGGREGATE

TUESDAY, MARCH 1, 2011

RIO TINTO STADIUM – SANDY, UTAH

 

Goals by Period                    1          2          F

Real Salt Lake                        2          2          4                     

Columbus Crew                      0          1          1         

 

Scoring Summary

RSL – Álvaro Saborío (Javier Morales, Andy Williams) 23’

RSL – Javier Morales (Andy Williams, Fabian Espíndola) 36’

CLB – Andres Mendoza (Eddie Gaven) 49’

RSL – Javier Morales (Paulo Jr.) 77’

RSL – Andy Williams (unassisted) 95+’

 

Real Salt Lake: GK-Nick Rimando, DF-Robbie Russell, DF-Chris Schuler, DF-Jamison Olave, DF-Chris Wingert; MF-Andy Williams, MF-Kyle Beckerman (Captain), MF-Javier Morales (Ned Grabavoy 87), MF-Will Johnson; FW-Álvaro Saborío (Paulo Jr. 71), FW-Fabian Espíndola (Jean Alexandre 85)

 

Columbus Crew: GK-Ray Burse Jr., DF-Rich Balchan, DF-Andy Iro (Captain), DF-Sebastian Miranda, DF-John Gardner (Julius James 60); MF-Emmanuel Ekpo (Dilly Duka 75), MF-Eddie Gaven, MF-Cole Grossman, MF-Robbie Rogers; FW-Jeff Cunningham (Justin Meram 65), FW-Andres Mendoza

 

Cautions

CLB – Josh Gardner – 43’

RSL – Javier Morales – 57’

CLB – Sebastian Miranda – 94+’

Ejections

None

Statistics       

Real Salt Lake

Columbus Crew

Shots

16

8

Shots on Goal

7

2

Saves

1

3

Fouls

7

10

Corner Kicks

10

5

Offside

5

2

Referee: Mark Geiger (USA)

Referee’s Assistants: Corey Rockwell (USA), George Gansler (USA)

Fourth Official: Terry Vaughn (USA)

Time of Game: 1:52

Weather: Partly Cloudy, 40 degrees

Attendance: 15,405

All Statistics contained in this boxscore are unofficial

 

REAL SALT LAKE QUOTE SHEET

CONCACAF CHAMPIONS LEAGUE – QUARTERFINAL ROUND, LEG TWO

REAL SALT LAKE 4 : 1 COLUMBUS CREW

 

REAL SALT LAKE HEAD COACH JASON KREIS

On the build up to the game and the result:  

“To be completely honest, I was a little concerned coming into this match because we’ve been talking a lot about it and what we’ve managed to do is put ourselves under a tremendous amount of pressure.  We really raised the level of expectations for ourselves.  On prior occasions we’ve struggled with that, so I was nervous that the guys would come out again very nervous tonight. Obviously we didn’t, so I’m extremely pleased with that situation.”

On the play of Andy Williams:

“He was incredible tonight, a very inspired performance.  I think he had a hand in almost all the goals, if not all of them, so really, really pleased for him.”

On what he expects heading into the Semifinal Round:

“I hope that we’ve learned. You hope that when you get guys in that same situation multiple times that they improve and they learn.  We’ve seen that if we can calm down, relax a little bit with possession we’ll have some success.  I would hope that in the next round we can expound on that and maybe even play better.” 

 

REAL SALT LAKE GOALKEEPER NICK RIMANDO

On whether this was a “statement win” for Real Salt Lake:

“No, we just wanted to beat them. We didn’t care if it was 5-0 or if it was 1-0, our objective was to win the game. We didn’t want a tie and that is exactly what we did.”

 

REAL SALT LAKE MIDFIELDER ANDY WILLIAMS

On the opening of the second half:

“We weren’t happy giving away that goal. We didn’t control the game the first 10 or 15 minutes; they took over those minutes and got the goal, but then we settled down and got back to our game.”

 

REAL SALT LAKE MIDFIELDER JAVIER MORALES

On how this game differed from last week’s game in Columbus:

“In Columbus it was really hard to play because it was so cold. Here we are at home and we tried to play our soccer.”

 

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