Real Salt Lake Bows Out of U.S. Open Cup, 2-0 to Sporting Kansas City

SANDY, Utah (Wednesday, June 6, 2018) – Real Salt Lake fell to rival Sporting Kansas City on Wednesday evening 2-0 in the fourth round of the 2018 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup at Rio Tinto Stadium. The loss sees Head Coach Mike Petke’s side bow out of the USOC in the fourth round for the second consecutive year.

A scoreless first half told the story of the opening stanza with each team seeing just one clear look on goal. RSL’s best chance fell to the feet of MF Jose Hernandez but his effort was struck wide inside the penalty area. GK Connor Sparrow did well to stand tall and save a point-blank effort from SKC forward Johnny Russell in the 40th minute to bring the match scoreless into halftime.

SKC earned the opening goal just two minutes after the start of the second half when Russell slammed home a diving header in the 47th minute. SKC doubled its advantage in the 74th minute when Russell turned provider to forward Kharlton Belmar who bundled the ball into the net.

RSL scrambled to get back in the game but couldn’t break the back line of SKC as the match ended with a 2-0 scoreline.

UP NEXT: RSL returns to league play when it travels to the LA Galaxy on Saturday, June 9. Kick off from StubHub Center is set for 8:30 p.m. MT.


SKC: Johnny Russell (Kharlton Belmar), 47th minute – Breaking free near the endline, Belmar sent a low cross into the area towards the run of Russell near the penalty area. The cross found Russell’s head as his diving effort slammed home the game’s opening goal.

SKC: Kharlton Belmar (Johnny Russell), 74th minute: Switching roles from the game’s first goal, Russell played provider to Belmar with his cross. Belmar’s run to the back post was ultimately bundled in after taking a touch off an RSL defender to double Sporting’s advantage.


RSL: Connor Sparrow, 43rd minute – SKC forward Johnny Russell broke free with space to shoot inside the RSL penalty area. Russell laced a driven shot straight at Sparrow who stood firm to deflect the shot away.


- Three players from RSL’s USL affiliate Real Monarchs SLC were summoned to the team for the USOC match against Sporting Kansas City. GK Jake Leeker, DF Michael Gallagher were on the bench while MF Andrew Brody started on the left wing and played 90 minutes in the loss.

- GK Connor Sparrow, DF Aaron Hererra and FW Ricky Lopez-Espin made their first starts in an RSL uniform as Herrera went 90 minutes and Lopez-Espin played 71 minutes.

Match: Real Salt Lake vs Sporting Kansas City
Date: June 9, 2018
Venue: Rio Tinto Stadium; Sandy, Utah
Attendance: 15,833
Weather: Sunny and 89 degrees

Scoring Summary:           1              2              F
Real Salt Lake                     0              0              0
Sporting KC                          0              2              2

RSL – Johnny Russell (Kharlton Belmar) 47’
RSL – Kharlton Belmar (Johnny Russell) 74’

Real Salt Lake (4-2-3-1): Connor Sparrow; Adam Henley, David Horst, Taylor Peay, Aaron Hererra; Pablo Ruiz, Nick Besler, Jose Hernandez; Ricky Lopez-Espin (Brooks Lennon, 71’), Andrew Brody, Luis Silva (Alfredo Ortuno, 78’)
Subs not used: Jake Leeker, Michael Gallagher, Danilo Acosta, Sebastian Saucedo, Corey Baird

Sporting Kansas City: (3-5-2): Adrian Zendejas; Amer Didic, Emiliano Amor, Matt Besler; Jaylin Lindsey, Gianluca Busio, Ilie Sanchez, Wan Zuzain (Gerso Fernandez, 83’), Cristian Lobato (Roger Espinoza, 68’), Johnny Russell (Daniel Salloi, 75’); Kharlton Belmar
Subs not used: Eric Dick, Ike Opara, Colton Storm, Graham Zusi

Stats Summary: RSL / SKC
Shots: 12 / 7
Shots on Goal: 2 / 4
Saves: 2 / 2
Corner Kicks: 5 / 2
Fouls: 8 / 5
Offside: 2 / 1


RSL – Aaron Hererra (caution) 28’
RSL – Pablo Ruiz (caution) 47’

Referee: Malik Badawi
Assistant Referees: TJ Zablocki, John Krill
4th Official: Brad Jensen