REAL SALT LAKE
TO BEGIN WESTERN CONFERENCE SEMIFINAL SERIES AT FC DALLAS ON SATURDAY
After Earning West’s #2 Seed, RSL to Begin Defense of Its MLS Cup Crown against High-Powered “Hoops;”
Next Saturday’s 3:00 p.m. MT Kickoff at Pizza Hut Park to be Televised Live Nationally on Fox Soccer Channel;
Defending Champs to Host Second Leg at Rio Tinto Stadium on Saturday, November 6 at 8:00 p.m. MT
SANDY, Utah (Sunday, October 24, 2010) – After seeing its hopes for a first-ever Supporters Shield and the Western Conference’s top seed fall short after tonight’s LA Galaxy win over FC Dallas, Real Salt Lake (West #2) has learned it will begin the defense of its MLS Cup crown next weekend in a Western Conference Semifinal Series against FC Dallas (West #3). The home-and-away series is set to begin on Saturday, October 30, at 3:00 p.m. MT, when the “Hoops” will host Real Salt Lake for Leg One at Pizza Hut Park in Frisco, Texas, the match being televised nationally on Fox Soccer Channel.
One week later on Saturday, November 6, Real Salt Lake will return home to its fortress of Rio Tinto Stadium for Leg Two of the Western Conference Semifinal Series, with the contest set for a primetime kickoff at 8:00 p.m. MT, also on Fox Soccer Channel. Fans can purchase their tickets for the decisive Leg 2 contest via the “Reign of RSL” Playoff Pack, available online at RealSaltLake.com or RioTintoStadium.com, over the phone at 801-727-2700, or in person at the Rio Tinto Stadium Box Office, Monday-Friday from 10:00 a.m.-6:00 p.m.
The Western Conference Semifinal Series is contested as an aggregate goals series in which no weight is placed on away goals, which means should Real Salt Lake and FC Dallas be tied in overall goals across the two games at the end of regulation of Leg 2 in Sandy the squads will square off in a 30-minute mini-game (played in its entirety) to determine a winner. Should that end even, the teams will then decide advancement to the Western Conference Championship by kicks from the penalty spot.
Real Salt Lake has racked up an impressive 3-0-1 record across its two previous Conference Semifinal Series appearances, defeating Chivas USA 3-2 on aggregate in its playoff debut in 2008 (1-0 W @ RSL, 2-2 T @ CHV) and knocking out defending champion Columbus Crew last year by a 4-2 margin (1-0 W @ RSL, 3-2 W @ CLB) en route to the Utah side’s first MLS Cup title. Real Salt Lake is 3-1-3 all-time in playoff contests, making back-to-back Conference Championship appearances the last two seasons after failing to qualify for MLS’ postseason during its first three years in the League.
Real Salt Lake and FC Dallas enter the MLS postseason as two of the League’s hottest teams not only this season, but in the League’s 15-year history, the sides recently becoming the only two teams in MLS annals to endure a 25-game stretch with just one defeat. It was Real Salt Lake ending FC Dallas’ League-record-tying 19-game undefeated streak and MLS record 12-game road unbeaten streak just over a week ago at Rio Tinto Stadium on Oct. 16, the Utah side’s 2-0 win (highlights) also extending RSL’s own League-record home undefeated run to 25 games. That result evened the season series at one win apiece, as FC Dallas’ own 2-0 victory over RSL (highlights) at Pizza Hut Park on July 17 has stood as the only blemish on RSL’s League slate in its last 25 games (14-1-10). Real Salt Lake will be looking to vanquish some demons in “Big D,” as the Claret-and-Cobalt have yet to take a point from eight contests at FC Dallas in regular season play since joining MLS in 2005, the last seven of those coming at Pizza Hut Park.
Western Conference Semifinal Series – #2 Real Salt Lake (15-4-11, 56 pts.) v. #3 FC Dallas (12-4-14, 50 pts.)
Leg 1: FC Dallas v. Real Salt Lake – Saturday, October 30 – 3:00 p.m. MT kickoff – Pizza Hut Park in Frisco, Texas – Fox Soccer Channel
Leg 2: Real Salt Lake v. FC Dallas – Saturday, November 6 – 8:00 p.m. MT kickoff – Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy, Utah – Fox Soccer Channel
2010 MLS Cup Playoffs Schedule
Western Conference Semifinal Series
- #1 LA Galaxy v. #4 Seattle Sounders FC (Sun., Oct. 31 & Sun, Nov. 7)
- #2 Real Salt Lake v. #3 FC Dallas (Sat., Oct. 30 & Sat., Nov. 6)
Eastern Conference Semifinal Series
- #1 New York Red Bulls v. #4 San Jose Earthquakes (Sat., Oct. 30 & Thurs., Nov. 4)
- #2 Columbus Crew v. #3 Colorado Rapids (Thursday, Oct. 28 & Sat., Nov. 6)
Conference Championships (one game at higher seed, plus OT and PKs if necessary):
- Thursday, November 11 OR Sunday, November 14 (ESPN2)
- Saturday, November 13 (Fox Soccer Channel)
MLS Cup 2010
· Sunday, Nov. 21 – 6:30 p.m. MT – BMO Field – Toronto, Ontario, Canada