HARRISON, N.J. – Real Salt Lake (11-7-4, 37 points, West #1) lost a heartbreaker on Saturday night, giving up goals in the 89th and 94th minutes to fall 4-3 to the New York Red Bulls (10-7-5, 35 points, East #2) at Red Bull Arena.
Real Salt Lake FW Alvaro Saborio had all three goals for RSL, but his hat trick wasn’t enough for the Claret-and-Cobalt, which went home losers after former FW Fabian Espindola buried his second PK of the game in the 89th minute and MF Dax McCarty scored the winner in the 94th.
New York MF Tim Cahill put the Red Bulls on top in the 11th minute. FW Thierry Henry curled a free kick in from the center of RSL’s half, finding an unmarked Cahill at the left post. The Australian Designated Player buried the opportunity, running onto the ball at the top-left corner of the six and heading home.
New York doubled its lead just 12 minutes later. RSL DF Abdouliue Mansally was whistled for a soft foul at the top of the box on New York DF Brandon Barklage, giving the Red Bulls a penalty kick. Espindola buried the chance, chipping his spot kick down the middle to give the Red Bulls a 2-0 lead.
Real Salt Lake nearly pulled one back in the 33rd minute. MF Javier Morales curled a low 25-yard free kick from the middle of the field around the New York wall, forcing Red Bulls GK Luis Robles into a fine diving save at the right post.
RSL dodged a major bullet in the 38th. Henry picked up a loose ball in the middle of the Claret-and-Cobalt’s defensive third, weaving his way past a pair of RSL defenders and into the left side of the box before hitting a cheeky right-footer off the far post from 15 yards. The Frenchman looked poised to finish the follow-up attempt, but RSL DF Nat Borchers made a big sliding block to keep Henry’s close-range effort out.
RSL GK Jeff Attinella made a huge save to keep RSL in the game in the 39th. MF Eric Alexander crossed a ball in from the right flank to Espindola, who took advantage of a fallen RSL player to turn and hit a shot on frame. Attinella made a big stop, rushing off his line to block the former RSL man’s attempt.
The Claret-and-Cobalt got on the board just before the break, with Saborio burying a PK to pull RSL within one in the 45th minute. FW Olmes Garcia earned the penalty, chasing down a long ball on the right side before rounding Red Bulls DF Markus Holgersson, who fouled Garcia in the box. Saborio buried the ensuing spot kick, hitting it low and into the left corner for his fifth goal of the year.
Attinella came up with another big stop in the 75th minute. Cahill got on the end of a corner kick at the right side of the six, putting a diving header on goal that Attinella stopped with a fantastic reaction save.
RSL made Attinella’s big stop pay off in the 80th minute, when Saborio scored his second goal of the match to equalize. Substitute MF Luis Gil hit a deflected ball that fell to Garcia in the right side of the box. Garcia quickly squared to the top of the 18 to Saborio, who hit a right footed shot off of Robles and inside the right post.
Saborio completed his hat trick two minutes later, scoring an incredible goal to give RSL an improbable lead. Substitute FW Joao Plata collected a ball on the left wing, cutting into the middle and finding Saborio at the top of the box. The Costa Rican international took a couple of touches to his left, before chipping an outstanding shot with the outside of the right post and into the right netting.
Unfortunately, RSL couldn’t hold the lead, conceding in the 89th and 94th minutes to fall 3-2. Espindola earned – and converted – a second penalty to tie, with referee Silviu Petrescu whistling RSL DF Aaron Maund for a controversial foul in the left side of the box. Attinella guessed correctly on Espindola’s spot kick, but couldn’t quite reach the shot, which found the left side of the net.
McCarty gave the Red Bulls the win in the 94th. Barklage collected the ball on the right wing, whipping in an early cross to the center of the area. McCarty got on the end of it, diving at full extension to redirect the ball past Attinella and into the left side of the net.
Real Salt Lake will return to action next Saturday, when it will take on the rival Colorado Rapids in the deciding game of the 2013 Rocky Mountain Cup Presented by Mark Miller Subaru.
Real Salt Lake Match Notes – RSL 3-4 NY
- Saturday’s game is the second straight match that RSL lost in second half stoppage time. The Claret-and-Cobalt lost last Saturday’s match to Sporting Kansas City after giving up a 96th minute goal to DF Ike Opara at Rio Tinto Stadium.
- Saturday’s match was RSL FW Alvaro Saborio’s first after missing RSL’s last four games while on CONCACAF Gold Cup duty with Costa Rica. Prior to Saturday, Saborio had only played two league games since April 20 due to a combination of injuries and international calls.
- Despite his frequent absences from the lineup – Saturday’s game was just his ninth league match of the season – Saborio now leads RSL and is tied for seventh in the league with seven goals this season. Saborio’s hat trick on Saturday was the third of his MLS career.
- Real Salt Lake was without three regulars due to international duty on Saturday night. Captain Kyle Beckerman, DF Tony Beltran and GK Nick Rimando all missed the match while on international duty with the U.S. national team at the CONCACAF Gold Cup.
- Saturday’s game was RSL’s first without both Beltran and regular DF Chris Wingert – who was suspended due to a red card in last week’s loss to KC – in 74 matches across all competitions. The last match that RSL played without both Beltran and Wingert prior to Saturday night was on Sept. 21, 2011, when the Claret-and-Cobalt beat New York 3-1 at Red Bull Arena.
- Saturday’s loss broke RSL’s six-game unbeaten run against New York.
REAL SALT LAKE 3–4 NEW YORK RED BULLS
SATURDAY, JULY 27, 2013
RED BULL ARENA
Goals by Period 1 2 F
Real Salt Lake 1 2 3
New York Red Bulls 2 2 4
NY – Tim Cahill (Thierry Henry) – 11’
NY – Fabian Espindola (Penalty Kick) – 23’
RSL – Alvaro Saborio (Penalty Kick) – 45’
RSL – Alvaro Saborio (Olmes Garcia) – 80’
RSL – Alvaro Saborio (Joao Plata) – 82’
NY – Fabian Espindola (Penalty Kick) – 89’
NY – Dax McCarty (Brandon Barklage) – 94’
RSL – Yordany Alvarez (Yellow; Foul) – 4’
RSL – Olmes Garcia (Yellow; Time Wasting) – 64’
NY – Jonny Steele (Yellow; Time Wasting) – 68’
NY – Jamison Olave (Yellow; Foul) – 76’
NY – Tim Cahill (Yellow; Dissent) – 78’
RSL – Aaron Maund (Yellow; Foul) – 88’
NY – Dax McCarty (Yellow; Celebration) – 95’
Real Salt Lake (4-1-2-1-2) – Jeff Attinella; Lovel Palmer (Joao Plata, 77’), Nat Borchers, Aaron Maund, Abdoulie Mansally; Yordany Alvarez (Khari Stephenson, 61’); Ned Grabavoy, Sebastian Velasquez (Luis Gil, 70’); Javier Morales (C); Olmes Garcia, Alvaro Saborio
Substitutes Not Used: Lalo Fernandez (GK), Brandon McDonald, Robbie Findley, Devon Sandoval
New York Red Bulls (4-4-2) – Luis Robles; Brandon Barklage, Jamison Olave, Markus Holgersson, Roy Miller; Eric Alexander, Tim Cahill (Lloyd Sam, 85’), Dax McCarty, Jonny Steele (Peguy Luyindula, 87’); Fabian Espindola (Marius Obekop, 92’), Thierry Henry (C)
Substitutes Not Used: Ryan Meara (GK), Ibrahim Sekagya, Michael Bustamante, Kosuke Kimura