Real Salt Lake 2 vs. 1 Vancouver Whitecaps
February 25, 2023; BC Place, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
Real Salt Lake (1-0-0, 3 points); Vancouver Whitecaps (0-1-0, 0 points)
Man of the Match: Real Salt Lake’s 2022 Iron Man Zac MacMath came up big in the team’s 2-1 victory in the season opener over the Vancouver Whitecaps. MacMath’s six saves proved vital in keeping RSL within striking distance of Vancouver. In the 67th minute, down 1-0, MacMath shut down a breakaway opportunity that looked likely to double the Whitecaps lead. His steady presence between the sticks steadied the ship, creating opportunity for RSL’s comeback win.
Telling Stat: Today’s victory extended Real Salt Lake’s unbeaten streak in season openers to 14 consecutive seasons, 13 of which have come on the road. After FC Dallas’ loss to Minnesota United earlier today, RSL holds the longest such streak in Major League Soccer history. The Club’s last opening day defeat came in 2009 at Seattle.
What You Missed: Real Salt Lake began the 2023 season with a come-from-behind win north of the border. After conceding a goal to Javain Brown in the 24th minute, RSL responded with two unanswered goals in the second half. Justen Glad found the end of a cross from Maikel Chang in the 70th minute to pull even at 1-1. Three minutes later captain Damir Kreilach struck the back of the net to take the 2-1 lead after some individual brilliance from Jefferson Savarino to set up the goal.
What’s Next: Real Salt Lake heads to Lumen Field in Seattle next Saturday to face the Sounders at 8:30 p.m. MT. On March 11 the Claret-and-Cobalt will begin their 2023 home campaign in a rematch with 2022 playoff opponent Austin FC at 7:30 p.m. MT.