SANDY, Utah – Real Salt Lake (15-10-7, 52 points, West #1) earned a hard fought point on Saturday night, tying FC Dallas (10-10-11, 41 points, West #8) 1-1 despite going down a man in the 17th minute in front of a sold-out crowd at Rio Tinto Stadium.
Real Salt Lake started brightly, but went down a man in the 17th minute when DF Abdoulie Mansally was shown a straight red card for a foul on Dallas MF Jackson. Despite the numerical disadvantage, Real Salt Lake scored first, going ahead in the 60th minute through FW Alvaro Saborio. Dallas FW Kenny Cooper equalized 12 minutes after Saborio’s goal to send both teams home with a point.
The result maintains the Claret-and-Cobalt’s position at the top of the Western Conference, one point ahead of second-place Seattle Sounders FC. RSL is one point behind the New York Red Bulls in the Supporters’ Shield race. Seattle has two games in hand on both RSL and New York.
Real Salt Lake had a golden opportunity in the fifth minute. MF Javier Morales curled a free kick in from the right flank toward Saborio and strike partner FW Robbie Findley just inside the penalty spot. Unfortunately for RSL, both strikers went for the ball, getting in each other’s way before combining for a header that bounced off the turf and over the bar.
Jackson put one off the post for Dallas in the 10th minute. FW Fabian Castillo hit an early ball in from the left wing, finding Jackson at the back post. The Brazilian directed his header across the face of goal, past outstretched RSL GK Nick Rimando and off the left post.
RSL went down a man in the 17th, when Mansally was shown a straight red card for a tackle on Jackson. Referee Hilario Grajeda sent Mansally off after the Gambian international clattered into Jackson on the left side in the FCD half.
Claret-and-Cobalt Head Coach Jason Kreis made a tactical change to adjust for the Mansally red card in the 21st, inserting DF Lovel Palmer for Findley.
Rimando made a huge save in the 34th to keep it scoreless. Dallas got behind the RSL defense for a point blank chance, with Castillo collecting a through ball on the left wing and racing into the area before squaring the ball to a wide open Jackson at the top of the six. The speedy attacker looked poised to put FCD ahead, but Rimando had other ideas, just getting a touch to Jackson’s first-time flick from the top of the six to deflect the effort over the bar.
Real Salt Lake started the second half brightly, nearly taking the lead in the 49th minute. Morales slipped a gorgeous through ball to MF Ned Grabavoy in the right side of the area, putting him in for a 1-on-1 with FCD GK Chris Seitz. Grabavoy ran around the ball and put a first time shot on frame, but Seitz came up big, with the former RSL man blocking Grabavoy’s eight-yard effort with a fine kick save.
Saborio put the Claret-and-Cobalt ahead in the 60th minute. Rimando started the play, launching a long ball forward that deflected off a Dallas player and toward the FCD goal. Saborio ran onto the opportunity, brilliantly letting the ball ride across his body before half-volleying it inside the left post from 12 yards out.
Dallas equalized in the 72nd minute. Substitute MF Je-Vaughn Watson got free in the left side of the area, putting a ball across the goalmouth that rolled past an onrushing Rimando and found Cooper at the back post. The substitute striker took a touch and slotted home from close range, finishing past a scrambling RSL defense.
Both sides pushed for a winner in the game’s final 15 minutes, with Dallas exerting its numerical advantage to hold more of the run of play. Neither side was able to create any clear cut opportunities however, with the game ending in a draw.
Real Salt Lake is on a bye next week. The Claret-and-Cobalt will return to action two weeks from tonight, taking on Western Conference foe Portland Timbers at JELD-WEN Field.
Real Salt Lake Match Notes – RSL1-1 DAL
- Tonight’s match was RSL’s seventh sellout of the MLS regular season at Rio Tinto Stadium. The capacity crowd of 20,488 marked the third-straight MLS sellout at the Sandy facility.
- RSL would’ve clinched its berth in the 2013 MLS Cup Playoffs with a win tonight. The draw will force RSL to look to its upcoming match against the Portland Timbers on Oct. 19 as its next chance to qualify for the postseason. RSL’s current streak of five consecutive MLS Cup Playoff berths is the longest active run of postseason qualification in the league. A sixth-consecutive postseason qualification would tie RSL for the second longest such streak in MLS history with the New York Red Bulls (Six years; 2003-2008), trailing only the New England Revolution (Eight years; 2002-2009).
- With tonight’s draw, RSL remains in first-place in the Western Conference with a total of 52 points, one point ahead of Seattle Sounders FC. The Claret-and-Cobalt remains competitive in the Supporters’ Shield race, currently sitting in second-place, one point behind league-leading New York.
- RSL recorded its sixth red card of the season when RSL DF Abdoulie Mansally was given a straight red in the 17th minute for a late tackle on Dallas’ Jackson. It also marked the second red card seen against FC Dallas this season, with MF Yordany Alvarez earning the first in RSL’s 2-0 loss at FCD on March 23.
- RSL MF Javier Morales received a yellow card in the 69th minute of tonight’s match. Morales will be suspended for the Claret-and-Cobalt’s match at Portland on Oct. 19 due to yellow card accumulation.
- Tonight was RSL FW Alvaro Saborio’s first appearance in an MLS match in over a month after missing RSL’s losses to Seattle on Sept. 13 and San Jose on Sept. 21 due to an injury suffered while on international duty with Costa Rica. His goal in the 60th minute was his 11th of the year (66th for RSL), moving him into a three-way tie for sixth-place in the Budweiser Golden Boot standings.
- RSL MF Luis Gil played the full 90 minutes tonight after missing Tuesday’s Open Cup Final loss following an emergency appendectomy on Sunday night.
- Real Salt Lake is now 9-15-5 against FC Dallas in MLS regular season and MLS Cup Playoff games. The Claret-and-Cobalt holds an 8-4-3 at home against the Hoops
- FC Dallas GK Chris Seitz started in net tonight, filling in for an injured Raul Fernandez. Seitz was initially drafted into the league by RSL as the No. 3 overall pick in the 2007 MLS SuperDraft out of the University of Maryland. Seitz recorded his first-ever win and shutout in MLS play with RSL in its 1-0 win over Kansas City in August, 2009. RSL traded Seitz to the Philadelphia Union after winning the 2009 MLS Cup, with Seitz eventually landing in Dallas prior to the 2011 season.
REAL SALT LAKE 1–1 FC DALLAS
SATURDAY, OCT. 5, 2013
RIO TINTO STADIUM
Goals by Period 1 2 F
Real Salt Lake 0 1 1
FC Dallas 0 1 1
RSL – Alvaro Saborio – 60’
DAL – Kenny Cooper (Je-Vaughn Watson) – 72’
DAL – Blas Perez (Yellow; Foul) – 13’|
RSL – Abdoulie Mansally (Red; Foul) – 17’
RSL – Javier Morales (Yellow; Foul) – 69’
DAL – Peter Luccin (Yellow; Dissent) – 78’
Real Salt Lake (4-1-2-1-2): Nick Rimando; Abdoulie Mansally, Chris Schuler, Nat Borchers, Tony Beltran; Kyle Beckerman (C); Ned Grabavoy, Luis Gil; Javier Morales (Yordany Alvarez, 81’); Robbie Findley (Lovel Palmer, 21’), Alvaro Saborio (Olmes Garcia, 85’)
Substitutes not used: Jeff Attinella (GK), Brandon McDonald, Sebastian Velasquez, Joao Plata
FC Dallas (4-2-3-1): Chris Seitz; Jair Benitez, George John (C), Stephen Keel, Kellyn Acosta; Andrew Jackson, Michel (Peter Luccin, 61’); Jackson, Mauro Diaz (Kenny Cooper, 46’), Fabian Castillo (Je-Vaughn Watson, 70’); Blas Perez
Substitutes not used: Kyle Zobeck (GK), David Ferreira, Matt Hedges, Zach Loyd
Referee: Hilario Grajeda
Assistant Referees: Ian Anderson, Kevin Duliba
4th Official: Jesus Cisneros
Weather: Clear and 54 degrees