SEATTLE (Sunday, October 25, 2015) – Real Salt Lake’s up-and-down 2015 season came to an end on Sunday at CenturyLink Field in Seattle, where Sounders FC got three goals in the first 20 minutes to race to a 3-0 win. RSL’s MLS-best run of seven consecutive postseason appearances came to an end as the Claret-and-Cobalt finished the season with a record of 11-15-8, missing the playoffs by 10 points in a competitive Western Conference.
Salt Lake played without five would-be starters as MF Kyle Beckerman was out due to yellow card accumulation and GK Nick Rimando, DF Chris Schuler, FW Joao Plata and DF Demar Phillips were all out due to injury. Seattle took advantage, pouncing on early opportunities to get three early goals to put the game out of reach.
The Sounders got out to the lead in the fifth minute as Clint Dempsey got on the end of a cross from Obafemi Martins. Leo Gonzalez led Martins up the left side behind the RSL defense and Martins crossed for Dempsey, who slid in front of DF Abdoulie Mansally to poke a shot into the net to put Salt Lake down 1-0.
That deficit doubled in the 10th minute when Dempsey laid a ball off for Marco Pappa for a curling shot from outside the box that snuck inside the far post, then went to 3-0 in the 20th minute when Dempsey scored on a putback of a shot from Martins that was saved by GK Jeff Attinella.
Seattle held a 6-4 advantage in shooting for the first half, putting four shots on goal while Salt Lake was held without a shot on frame.
After a back-and-forth second half, MF Luis Gil scored on RSL’s first shot on goal in the 77th minute.
MF Javier Morales rolled the ball up the right side of the box for DF Tony Beltran and Beltran clipped a low cross in for Gil coming down the middle of the box. Gil got a foot to the ball and pushed it past Stefan Frei to narrow the deficit to 3-1 as Salt Lake continued to put pressure on, outshooting Seattle 4-1 in the second half, but could not fight back into the match and finished with the 3-1 final.
Real Salt Lake ends the season without a playoff berth for the first time since 2007 and will start the 2016 campaign in late-February in the quarterfinals of CONCACAF Champions League.
GAME NOTES – SEAvRSL
- RSL MF Kyle Beckerman missed the match due to yellow-card accumulation after receiving his ninth caution of the season in the regular season home finale against FC Dallas.
- GK Nick Rimando missed the match with a meniscus injury, while DF Demar Phillips had an ankle contusion, FW Joao Plata had an adductor strain and DF Chris Schuler had foot surgery.
- Real Salt Lake’s record on turf dipped to 0-4-1 this season (0-4-2 in all competitions), with RSL scoring just two goals in five league matches on fake grass.
SEATTLE SOUNDERS FC 3-1 REAL SALT LAKE
SUNDAY, OCTOBER 25, 2015
Goals by Period 1 2 F
Seattle Sounders FC 3 0 3
Real Salt Lake 0 1 1
SEA: Clint Dempsey (Obafemi Martins) 5’
SEA: Marco Pappa (Clint Dempsey) 10’
SEA: Clint Dempsey 20’
RSL: Luis Gil (Tony Beltran, Javier Morales) 77’
RSL: Juan Manuel Martinez (Yellow; Foul) 43’
RSL: John Stertzer (Yellow; Foul) 55’
RSL: Sebastian Jaime (Yellow; Foul) 89’
Real Salt Lake (4-3-3): Jeff Attinella; Tony Beltran, Aaron Maund, Jamison Olave, Abdoulie Mansally; John Stertzer, Luis Gil, Javier Morales (C); Juan Manuel Martinez, Devon Sandoval (Olmes Garcia 68’), Jordan Allen (Sebastian Jaime 49’).
Substitutes not used: Lalo Fernandez, Justen Glad, Luke Mulholland, Sebastian Saucedo, Elias Vasquez.
Seattle Sounders FC (4-4-2): Stefan Frei; Tyrone Mears, Brad Evans (C), Chad Marshall, Leo Gonzalez (Oniel Fisher 70’); Marco Pappa, Osvlado Alonso (Gonzalo Pineda 73’), Erik Friberg, Andreas Ivanschitz; Clint Dempsey (Chad Barrett 65’), Obafemi Martins.
Substitutes not used: Troy Perkins, Andy Rose, Zach Scott, Nelson Valdez.
Referee: Sorin Stoica
Assistant Referees: Craig Lowry, James Conlee
Fourth Official: Drew Fischer
Weather: Cloudy and 61 degrees