SANDY, Utah – Real Salt Lake FW Alvaro Saborio and DF Abdoulie Mansally have both been called up to their national teams for World Cup Qualifying matches. Saborio will join the Costa Rican national team for CONCACAF qualifiers against the U.S. on Sept. 6 and at Jamaica on Sept. 10 and Mansally will meet up with the Gambian national side for its Sept. 7 qualifier against Tanzania.
Despite only playing in 13 league matches, Saborio leads Real Salt Lake and is tied for fourth in MLS with 10 MLS goals this year. Mansally has 12 regular season appearances this year, seven of which of have been starts.
Real Salt Lake Captain Kyle Beckerman and GK Nick Rimando were both called up earlier this week to the U.S. squad that will play at Costa Rica on Sept. 6 and host Mexico in Columbus on Sept. 10. The Sept. 6 Costa Rica-U.S. match in San Jose, Costa Rica will mark the second time this year that Beckerman, Rimando and Saborio will face off in a World Cup Qualifying match; the RSL trio – along with Claret-and-Cobalt American DF Tony Beltran – squared off against one another in the U.S.’s 1-0 win over Costa Rica on March 22.
Saborio, Mansally, Beckerman and Rimando are not scheduled to miss any Real Salt Lake matches while on international duty. The Claret-and-Cobalt – which beat the Portland Timbers 4-2 at home on Friday night – will return to action in two weeks, traveling to the Pacific Northwest to take on Seattle Sounders FC on Friday, Sept. 13 in a nationally televised match at CenturyLink Field.
Costa Rica is currently in second-place in the CONCACAF Hexagonal, two points behind the first-place U.S. with four games remaining. The top three teams in the CONCACAF Hexagonal automatically qualify for next year’s FIFA World Cup, while the fourth-place squad will take on New Zealand in a home-and-home playoff in November for a spot in Brazil.
Gambia was mathematically eliminated from advancing to the final round of CAF qualifying in the last round of qualifiers.