Sandy, UT (Saturday, April 8, 2017) – Real Salt Lake (1-3-2, 5 points) earned its first win of 2017 under Head Coach Mike Petke, taking down Western Conference foe Vancouver Whitecaps FC 3-0 in front of 17,069 fans at snowy Rio Tinto Stadium. MF Albert Rusnák opened his scoring account for the club by scoring what was to be the game-winner in the 54th minute and added two assists to propel RSL to victory in Petke’s debut.
In a back-and-forth first half, RSL edged the Whitecaps in shots taken 11-4, but wasn’t able to get on the scoresheet before the halftime whistle blew.
As the snow and wind picked up intensity in the second half, the orange match balls came out for only the second time in club history. The snow affected play greatly but it didn’t seem to hinder RSL’s attacking prowess from the first half. After Rusnák’s goal in the 54th minute, FW Yura Movsisyan curled a shot from inside the box off the far post and in for his third goal of the year in the 74th minute.
Just four minutes later, Mulholland tallied his second of the year from a Rusnák corner kick that saw Whitecaps FC goalkeeper David Ousted misjudge the flight of the ball that fell right to Mulholland, who volleyed home from close range.
With the win, RSL GK Nick Rimando registered career shutout number 131, growing his already impressive mark atop the Major League Soccer goalkeeping records.
UP NEXT: RSL hits the road looking to retain the Rocky Mountain Cup as they take on the Colorado Rapids for the first time in 2017 on April 15 (7 p.m. MT kickoff). Last season RSL claimed the Rocky Mountain Cup after beating the Rapids in both games played between the sides at Rio Tinto Stadium. RSL has won 15 of the 37 games played against the Rapids en route to eight Rocky Mountain Cup titles.
GOAL SCORING RUNDOWN:
RSL – Albert Rusnák (Joao Plata), 54th minute: A wonderfully-weighted ball from Plata played from the defensive half sent Rusnák in on goal. With the snow and a defender slowing him down, Rusnák cut the ball back a fired a low driven shot inside the near post past an outstretched Ousted.
RSL – Yura Movsisyan (Albert Rusnák), 74th minute: After receiving the ball in the middle of the field, Rusnák took it wide and played a perfectly-weighted ball across the field to Movsisyan inside the penalty area. Movsisyan cut onto his right foot and curled a shot off the far post and into the net.
RSL – Luke Mulholland (Albert Rusnák), 78th minute: Rusnák played a corner kick into the box with the snow causing Ousted to misjudge the ball in the air. Mulholland was waiting for the mistake to volley it home for the games third goal.
KEY SAVES AND DEFENSIVE STOPS:
VAN – David Ousted, 7th minute: Movsisyan did well to win the ball back in Vancouver’s penalty area and create a chance. Movsisyan hit a hard pass across the box that found the feet of Plata, who put a shot on frame but Ousted was equal to the task, diving low to his left to corral the effort.
VAN – Kendall Waston, 14th minute: A counter-attack saw Plata create space a fire a low cross to Movsisyan at the near post. He attempted to flick the ball into the near post but Waston was there to block the shot out for a corner.
RSL – Nick Rimando, 33rd minute: From a Vancouver corner kick, Nicolas Mezquida attempted to beat Rimando directly from the corner but the RSL net minder dove to punch the ball clear.
RSL – Nick Rimando, 59th minute: Well-worked interchanging play at the top of RSL’s penalty area gave Vancouver space for a shot at the top of the box. Rimando held onto the low shot aimed at his right post.
- Head Coach Mike Petke earned his first win with RSL in his debut match since taking the reins on March 29
- RSL defender Danilo Acosta earned his first competitive appearance for RSL as he started the match and played the full 90 minutes at right back. Acosta is now the eighth player to make his RSL debut this season.
- RSL midfielder Albert Rusnák scored his first goal since signing for the club in January. His low, driven shot in the second half proved to be the game-winner. Rusnák also had a hand in RSL’s other two goals, providing assists on both.
- Goalkeeper Nick Rimando earned shutout number 131 in RSL’s 3-0 win, extending his career MLS record.
Match: Real Salt Lake vs Vancouver Whitecaps FC
Date: April 8, 2017
Venue: Rio Tinto Stadium; Sandy, Utah
Weather: Showers and 41 degrees
Scoring Summary: 1 2 F
Real Salt Lake 0 3 3
Vancouver Whitecaps FC 0 0 0
RSL – Albert Rusnak (Joao Plata) 54’
RSL – Yura Movsisyan (Albert Rusnak) 74’
RSL – Luke Mulholland (Albert Rusnak) 78’
Real Salt Lake (4-2-3-1): Nick Rimando; Danilo Acosta, Chris Wingert, Chris Schuler, Demar Phillips; Kyle Beckerman (Omar Holness 89’), Luke Mulholland; Brooks Lennon, Albert Rusnak, Joao Plata (Sebastian Saucedo 61’); Yura Movsisyan (Luis Silva 81’)
Subs not used: Matt VanOekel, Reagan Dunk, Justin Schmidt, Ricardo Velazco
Vancouver Whitecaps FC: (3-5-2): David Ousted; Kendall Waston, Christian Dean (Christian Techera 59’), Tim Parker; Jakob Nerwinski, Russell Teibert, Matias Laba (Andrew Jacobsen 77’), Tony Tchani (Mauro Rosales 59’), Marcel de Jong; Nicolas Mezquida, Fredy Montero
Subs not used: Paolo Tornaghi, Marco Bustos, Kyle Greig, Sheanon Williams
Stats Summary: RSL/ VAN
Shots: 19 / 14
Shots on Goal: 6 / 3
Saves: 3 / 3
Corner Kicks: 12 / 5
Fouls: 13 / 9
Offside: 2 / 0
VAN – Matias Laba (caution) 30’
RSL – Chris Schuler (caution) 40’
RSL – Kyle Beckerman (caution) 42’
Referee: Baldomero Toledo
Assistant Referees: Ian Anderson, Kevin Klinger
4th Official: Fotis Bazakos