Houston, Texas (Wednesday, May 31, 2017) – Real Salt Lake (4-9-2, 14pts) conceded three first-half goals to the Houston Dynamo, ultimately falling 5-1 on a humid evening at BBVA Compass Stadium.
RSL’s lone goal came in the 63rd minute through FW Joao Plata as he curled home a wonderfully hit free-kick from 20 yards for his second of the year and second in as many games.
A rough first half for the Claret-and-Cobalt saw two strikes from Alex and Mauro Manotas and a Justin Schmidt own-goal fire the Dynamo into a commanding 3-0 lead going into the half. RSL kept Dynamo goalkeeper Tyler Deric busy in the first half, forcing him into several key saves as he kept MF Jefferson Savarino and Plata at bay.
RSL’s push for a grapple on the game slipped as Houston added a fourth in just the 52nd minute through Erick Torres and a fifth 16 minutes later when Leonardo headed home a Boniek Garciá cross.
Head Coach Mike Petke exhausted all three of his substitutions in the match as he brought on FW Luis Silva, MF José Hernández and MF Omar Holness in search of a spark, but ultimately found nothing as time expired on a dreary evening for RSL.
UP NEXT: RSL will travel a few hours north to Toyota Stadium to take on FC Dallas for their second matchup of the season on Saturday (6:00 pm MST kick-off). RSL currently sits 0-1-0 against the Hoops from Dallas this year after falling 3-0 at Rio Tinto on May 6. The game will be the last regular season meeting between the two Western Conference sides.
GOAL SCORING RUNDOWN:
HOU – Justin Schmidt (Own Goal) 3rd minute: A cross fired through the side of the box forced the RSL defense into a decision on how to clear the ball. Defender Justin Schmidt reached out to try and redirect the cross but turned the ball into his own net.
HOU – Alex (Mauro Manotas) 15th minute: A short corner taken quickly by Houston saw Mauro Manotas give the ball right back to Alex. His arching run around the corner of the area left the RSL defense frozen as he curled a low effort into the far corner of the RSL net for the game’s second goal.
HOU – Mauro Manotas (Erick Torres) 45th minute: Dynamo forward Erick Torres created a clever flick onto Manotas inside the penalty area looking for a shot. When the space came, Manotas fired a low driven shot past RSL goalkeeper Matt VanOekel for the game’s third goal.
HOU – Erick Torres (Alberth Elis) 52nd minute: As Houston midfielder Alberth Elis found space down the left side of the RSL defense Torres gave himself some space at the back post away from his defender. The Mexican international kept that space as Elis found him for an easy tap in.
RSL – Joao Plata 63rd minute: RSL midfielder Albert Rusnák won a free-kick twenty yards from goal, creating a perfect scoring opportunity. Plata stepped up to the set piece and bent a perfect shot into the far side netting, rooting Dynamo goalkeeper Tyler Deric to the spot.
HOU – Leonardo (Boniek Garciá, Ricardo Clark) 68th minute: Residual play from a corner kick gave Dynamo midfielder Boniek Garcia get a second cross into the box. Garcia whipped a cross towards the back post as Leonardo was there to head home for his third of the year.
KEY SAVES AND DEFENSIVE STOPS:
HOU – Tyler Deric, 13th minute: A deflected shot from RSL midfielder Jefferson Savarino forced Deric into a diving save as he leapt high to his right to corral the effort.
HOU – Tyler Deric, 22nd minute: A long range blast from RSL midfielder Kyle Beckerman forced Deric into a low diving save to his right to handle the shot.
RSL – Matt VanOekel, 35th minute: With Houston attacking heavily down RSL’s left side, Dynamo forward Alberth Elis played a ball in by Dynamo forward Alberth Elis forced VanOekel into cut out a ball past the penalty spot before Erick Torres could have a shot on goal.
HOU – Tyler Deric, 39th minute: RSL striker Jefferson Savarino crept behind the back line and found himself with the ball at his feet moving away from goal. As he positioned himself for a shot on target Deric closed the angle and saved the shot.
RSL – Matt VanOekel, 49th minute: A quick counter attack and a few lucky bounces gave Dynamo striler Mauro Manotas a chance on goal. He elected to curl a shot with the outside of his foot but VanOekel was there to parry away the effort.
RSL – Matt VanOekel, 88th minute: Dynamo striker Erick Torres broke free on a breakaway towards goal looking for his second goal of the game. VanOekel narrowed Torres’ angle well on goal and made himself big to make the stop.
- RSL captain and midfielder Kyle Beckerman returned to the starting XI after missing the May 27 matchup against Philadelphia due to a disciplinary suspension set forth by the league.
- RSL was without yet another player due to international duty, this time starting goalkeeper Nick Rimando as he represents the USMNT as they train in Denver. He joins a long list of absentees already representing their country at the U-20 World Cup in South Korea: Justen Glad (U.S.), Brooks Lennon (U.S.), Danilo Acosta (U.S.), and Sebastian Saucedo (U.S.).
- Striker Yura Movsisyan returned to the starting lineup after three games on the bench with Luis Silva starting up top.
Match: Real Salt Lake at Houston Dynamo
Date: May 31, 2017
Venue: BBVA Compass Stadium; Houston, Texas
Weather: Cloudy and 83 degrees
Scoring Summary: 1 2 F
Real Salt Lake 0 1 1
Houston Dynamo 3 2 5
HOU – Justin Schmidt (Own Goal) 3’
HOU – Alex (Mauro Manotas) 15’
HOU – Mauro Manotas (Erick Torres) 45’
HOU – Erick Torres (Alberth Elis) 52’
RSL – Joao Plata 63’
HOU – Leonardo (Boniek Garciá, Ricardo Clark) 68’
Real Salt Lake (4-2-3-1): Matt Van Oekel; Tony Beltran, Aaron Maund, Chris Schuler, Justin Schmidt; Sunny, Kyle Beckerman (Omar Holness, 73’); Jefferson Savarino, Albert Rusnák (José Hernández, 66’), Joao Plata (Luis Silva, 63’); Yura Movsisyan.
Subs not used: Lalo Fernandez, Chris Wingert, Reagan Dunk, Luke Mulholland
Houston Dynamo: (4-3-3): Tyler Deric; A.J. DeLaGarza, Adolfo Machado, Leonardo, Dylan Remick; Alex (Memo Rodríguez, 66’), Juan Cabezas, Ricardo Clark; Mauro Manotas (Boniek Garciá, 62’), Erick Torres, Alberth Elis (Vicente Sanchez, 71’)
Subs not used: Joe Willis, Jalil Anibaba, Kevin Garcia, Andrew Wenger
Stats Summary: HOU/RSL
Shots: 18 / 16
Shots on Goal: 7 / 9
Saves: 8 / 3
Corner Kicks: 6 / 9
Fouls: 14 / 9
Offside: 2 / 4
RSL – Sunny (caution) 54’
HOU – Juan Cabezas (caution) 57’
HOU – Boniek Garcia (caution) 79’
Referee: Ricardo Salazar
Assistant Referees: Jeffrey Green, Frank Anderson
4th Official: Ismail Elfath