SANDY, Utah (Thursday, October 18, 2018) – Real Salt Lake (14-12-7, 49 points, 6 West) earned a statement-making 4-1 victory over New England Revolution on Thursday in the regular season home finale at Rio Tinto Stadium. The win moves Head Coach Mike Petke’s side four points clear of the playoff line with one match remaining in the 2018 regular season.
The match began just as RSL wanted as it got the go-ahead goal just four minutes in when MF Nick Besler earned his first goal in Major League Soccer when he slid to knock in a low cross from FW Corey Baird. Just ten minutes later, FW Sebastian Saucedo doubled RSL’s advantage as the ball found its way to the top of the penalty area where he brought the ball down before rifling a shot into the net from 17 yards to double its advantage.
RSL wasn’t done as Baird made it 3-0 in the 29th minute, calmly slotting home a low shot into the far side-netting for his eighth goal of the season. In the biggest play of the first half, GK Nick Rimando stood tall, saving Revolution striker Teal Bunbury’s penalty, stretching a big right hand into the top corner of the net to parry away the effort in the 35th minute.
The second half began much like the first ended, as RSL added a fourth goal through MF Damir Kreilach who turned home his 12th goal of the 2018 season after Video Assistant Referee judged that Kreilach was indeed onside in the 50th minute.
In the 69th minute Kelyn Rowe breathed life into the Revolution as his headed effort from a Diego Fagundez freekick found the back of the net easily to bring the score to 4-1. RSL would see out the match from there, maintaining possession to wear out the clock to secure the victory.
UP NEXT: RSL looks now to a quick turnaround match against Portland Timbers on Sunday, October 21 at 3:00 p.m. MT from Providence Park in its regular season finale.
GOAL SCORING RUNDOWN:
RSL: Nick Besler (Corey Baird, Damir Kreilach), 4th minute: A clinical counter attack saw Kreilach spring Baird early in behind the Revolution defense. Baird did well to set up a cross to the back post which easily found Besler who slid to deflect the ball home for his first MLS goal.
RSL: Sebastian Saucedo (Damir Kreilach), 14th minute: After another wonderful cross sent in by Baird, --- flicked a header to the top of the penalty area. Saucedo took the ball down before fizzing a shot through traffic past Revolution goalkeeper Brad Knighton for the two-goal lead.
RSL: Corey Baird (Luke Mulholland), 29th minute: Latching on to a through ball from Mulholland, Baird found himself in on goal. Baird held the ball up before striking a low shot into the far side-netting to leave Revolution goalkeeper Brad Knighton wrong-footed.
RSL: Damir Kreilach (Nedum Onuoha, Sebastian Saucedo), 50th minute: After a corner kick sent in by Saucedo, Kreilach inched away from his defender at the back-post after Video Assistant Referee judged that Kreilach was indeed onside after a flick on from Onuoha to turn home the game’s fourth goal.
NE: Kelyn Rowe (Diego Fagundez), 69th minute: A textbook freekick into the penalty area from Fagundez found the wide-open Rowe who headed home powerfully to pull one back for the Revolution.
KEY SAVES AND DEFENSIVE STOPS:
RSL: Nick Rimando, 35th minute: Drawing a penalty kick, New England striker Teal Bunbury stepped up to the spot, hoping to pull a shot back for the Revolution. Rimando read the shot well, diving to his left to stretch a hand out to parry away the penalty kick for his 24th career penalty kick save.
- MF Nick Besler’s goal was his first MLS goal. In his first MLS start, DF Nedum Onuoha registered his first MLS assist. Meanwhile, in his first start of the season, MF Luke Mulholland logged his first assist of the season as well.
- MF Kyle Beckerman and MF Sunny were both unavailable while serving suspensions for yellow card accumulation.
- Prior to the match, MF Kyle Beckerman was awarded the 2018 Jordan Guernsey Humanitarian of the Year Award for his efforts in the Salt Lake community.
- MF Albert Rusnák, FW Joao Plata and FW Jefferson Savarino were all available on the bench for RSL after playing international friendlies on Tuesday in Europe. Rusnák scored his third goal for Slovakia in a 1-1 draw with Sweden while Plata represented Ecuador against Oman and Savarino played for Venezuela against the United Arab Emirates.
Match: Real Salt Lake vs New England Revolution
Date: October 18, 2018
Venue: Rio Tinto Stadium; Sandy, Utah
Weather: Sunny and 58 degrees
Scoring Summary: 1 2 F
Real Salt Lake 3 1 4
New England 0 1 1
RSL: Nick Besler (Corey Baird, Damir Kreilach) 4’
RSL: Sebastian Saucedo (Damir Kreilach) 14’
RSL: Corey Baird (Luke Mulholland) 29’
RSL: Damir Kreilach (Nedum Onuoha, Sebastian Saucedo) 50’
NE: Kelyn Rowe (Diego Fagundez) 69’
Real Salt Lake (4-2-3-1): Nick Rimando; Brooks Lennon, Marcelo Silva, Nedum Onuoha, Aaron Herrera; Luke Mulholland, Nick Besler; Corey Baird, Damir Kreilach (Pablo Ruiz, 76’), Sebastian Saucedo; Luis Silva.
Subs not used: Andrew Putna, Justen Glad, Danilo Acosta, Albert Rusnák, Jefferson Savarino, Joao Plata
New England Revolution: (4-5-1): Brad Knighton; Jalil Anibaba, Brandon Bye, Kelyn Rowe, Michael Mancienne; Cristian Penilla, Diego Fagundez, Scott Caldwell (Mark Segbers, HT), Wilfreid Zahibo (Juan Agudelo, 31’), Luis Caicedo (Brian Wright, 77’); Teal Bunbury
Subs not used: Matt Turner, Cristhian Machado, Issac Angking, Guillermo Hauche
Stats Summary: RSL / NE
Shots: 11 / 10
Shots on Goal: 8 / 6
Saves: 5 / 4
Corner Kicks: 3 / 10
Fouls: 12 / 19
Offside: 4 / 1
RSL – Brooks Lennon (caution) 35’
RSL – Damir Kreilach (caution) 41’
NE – Diego Fagundez (caution) 60’
Referee: Jair Marrufo
Assistant Referees: Jeffery Gresson, Adam Garner
4th Official: Nima Saghafi
VAR: Alex Chilowicz