Real Salt Lake 0 at San Jose Earthquakes 1
September 27, 2015; Avaya Stadium
Real Salt Lake (10-12-8, 38 points); San Jose Earthquakes (12-12-7, 43 points)
Man of the Match: Nick Rimando made four saves on the match, but one was Save of the Year material. San Jose built a promising attack up the left side through Shea Salinas and he split a perfect cross to Chris Wondolowski at the edge of the six-yard box. Left all alone with nothing but the net of the goal in front of him, he touched his shot on frame only to have Rimando sprawl from right to left to make the stop in the 51st minute.
Telling Stat: One-third of the goals Real Salt Lake has allowed this season have coming the final 15 minutes of matches. Of the 42 goals allowed, 14 have come in that final stanza and even more disheartening is that six of those goals have been game-winners.
What You Missed: San Jose scored two goals in three matches against Real Salt Lake this season … and both featured missed offside calls. Back in May, Wondolowski scored from an offside position in a 1-1 draw at Rio Tinto Stadium. Then on Sunday, Quincy Amarikwa was offside on the entry ball that led to Matias Perez Garcia scoring the game-winner. There were certainly other factors that played into the results of both matches, but RSL may be right to feel hard-done by both non-calls.
So What: Real Salt Lake is playing on a razor’s edge in the final month of the season. What was very little margin for error has now been completely eliminated and RSL seemingly must finish with a perfect record in October to have a chance at making the playoffs for an eighth consecutive season. A 3-0-1 record could well get the Claret-and-Cobalt through as well, but to be sure, RSL will need to muster as many points as possible in those four matches to feel comfortable.