Real Salt Lake 0 vs. 4 St. Louis City SC
March 25, 2023; America First Field; Sandy, Utah
Real Salt Lake (1-3-0, 3 points); St. Louis City SC (5-0-0, 15 points)
Man Of The Match: Brayan Vera made his Real Salt Lake debut, featuring in the starting XI and playing for a full 90 minutes. His physical presence was felt at the back in the first half, especially after a few key players were missing due to injury or international call-ups. Vera’s shot in first-half stoppage time, which was saved by a diving Roman Bürki, was the closest RSL came to finding the back of the net.
Telling Stat: Since Real Salt Lake joined Major League Soccer in 2005, there have been 18 other expansion teams added to the league ranks. St. Louis is the 16th expansion team that RSL has played since joining the league (the Club has not yet played Inter Miami, and will play Charlotte FC for the first time on April 8). With the loss to St. Louis, RSL is now 6-8-2 when facing a new expansion team for the first time, and 8-5-3 in the first matchup at home against those 16 teams.
What You Missed: The first half was tightly contested, with both teams creating multiple chances to score the game’s first goal. RSL newcomers Vera and Andrés Gómez came close to scoring their first goals with the Club at the end of the first half, but both were denied by the St. Louis defense. Following the break, the visitors wasted no time in finding the back of the net as Nicholas Gioacchini tapped in a corner kick to take the 1-0 lead. St. Louis scored again in the 61st minute when João Klauss buried a Justen Glad miss-clearance from outside the 18-yard-box. Klauss capitalized on another RSL mistake, picking off a pass from Pablo Ruiz in the 66th minute and adding his second goal of the night. Rasmus Alm scored the insurance goal in the 76th minute to cement the victory for St. Louis.
What’s Next?: RSL will take on the Columbus Crew next Saturday, April 1 at 5:30 p.m. MT in the Club’s first match this season against an Eastern Conference opponent. The following Saturday, April 8 at 7:30 p.m. MT RSL will host 2022 expansion side Charlotte FC at America FIrst Field in the first-ever league matchup between the two clubs.