MATCH 34: REAL SALT LAKE at PORTLAND TIMBERS (OCTOBER 21, 2018)
Starting XI: Nick Rimando; Brooks Lennon, Marcelo Silva, Justen Glad, Aaron Herrera; Kyle Beckerman, Sunny; Jefferson Savarino, Albert Rusnák, Joao Plata; Damir Kreilach.
Bench: Andrew Putna, Nedum Onuoha, Danilo Acosta, Nick Besler, Sebastian Saucedo, Corey Baird, Luis Silva.
- Real Salt Lake’s starting XI sees the returns of six players who were either on the bench or unavailable in Thursday’s 4-1 win over the New England Revolution – DF Justen Glad (coach’s decision), MF Kyle Beckerman (suspension), MF Sunny (suspension), MF Albert Rusnák (international duty), FW Joao Plata (international duty) and FW Jefferson Savarino (international duty).
- RSL is 7-6-7 all-time against the Timbers, including a 2-2-5 mark at Providence Park in MLS regular season play. Additionally, RSL won both playoff matches against Portland in 2013 – 4-2 at Rio Tinto Stadium and 1-0 at Providence Park.
- A win for RSL would clinch a berth in the 2018 MLS Cup Playoffs. Salt Lake would remain in contention with a loss or a draw, but would need the LA Galaxy to lose or draw in either of LA’s final two matches – at Minnesota United on Sunday or at home against the Houston Dynamo on Sunday, October 28.
- Mike Petke makes two changes to the lineup that started against the Timbers two weeks ago at Rio Tinto Stadium. DF Marcelo Silva replaces DF Nick Besler and MF Sunny replaces FW Corey Baird, with Damir Kreilach moving up top.
GK Nick Rimando (USA/22 caps/39 years old/32 games, 32 starts (484, 484)/13-12-7 (209-162-113), 1.71 GAA/D.C. United) – Of Rimando’s 209 career MLS victories, seven have come against the Portland Timbers in 18 starts. He holds a 1.11 goals against average against Portland.
RB Brooks Lennon (USA/0 caps/21 years old/32 games, 31 starts (57, 46)/0 goals, 5 assists (3, 9)/Liverpool (England)/HGP) – Second on RSL with 45 tackles and third with 43 interceptions.
RCB Marcelo Silva (29 years old/17 games, 17 starts (26, 26)/0 goals, 0 assists (0, 0)/Zaragoza (Spain)) – Making his second consecutive start after returning from an adductor strain following the match against Atlanta United on September 22. Made one start against Portland last year in a 2-1 win at Rio Tinto Stadium in September.
LCB Justen Glad (USA/0 caps/21 years old/32 games, 32 starts (85, 83)/0 goals, 0 assists (2, 1)/RSL Academy/HGP) – Returns to the starting lineup after ending a streak of 50 consecutive starts on Thursday against New England. Leads MLS with 89 interceptions. Also ranks fourth in MLS with 26 blocks. Ranks third on the team with 44 tackles.
LB Aaron Herrera (21 years old/15 games, 13 starts (15, 13)/0 goals, 0 assists (0, 0)/University of New Mexico) – Making his 14th consecutive start after making his first on July 21 in a 2-2 draw with the Colorado Rapids. RSL is 5-3-5 in his previous 13 starts. Ranks sixth on RSL in tackles with 34, including a game-high seven on Thursday against New England. Made his MLS debut on the road against Seattle Sounders FC in May. Waited until July 7 in a 2-0 win over FC Dallas for his second appearance.
CM Kyle Beckerman (USA/58 caps/36 years old/30 games, 28 starts (462, 431)/1 goal, 1 assist (41, 50)/Colorado Rapids) – Leads RSL and ranks sixth in MLS with 77 tackles. Ranks second on RSL with 48 interceptions. Has two goals and two assists in 16 career matches against the Timbers, including a bomb at Providence Park last July. With his 50th career assist, he became the 22nd player in MLS history to amass at least 40 goals and 50 assists, joining five former RSL players – Javier Morales, Jason Kreis, Jeff Cunningham, Chris Klein and Clint Mathis on that list.
CM Sunny (Nigeria/1 cap/30 years old/22 games, 15 starts (58, 48)/0 goals, 1 assist (1, 3)/Alanyaspor (Turkey)) – RSL is 7-5-3 in his 15 starts and 11-6-5 in his 22 appearances. Ranks fifth on RSL in tackles with 42.
RW Jefferson Savarino (Venezuela/3 caps/21 years old/31 games, 31 starts (53, 50)/7 goals, 11 assists (13, 16)/Zulia (Venezuela)/DP) – Returns to the 11 after watching from the bench following international duty where he played 90 minutes in a 2-0 friendly win for Venezuela over UAE on Tuesday. Has two goals and one assist in three career matches against the Timbers. Ranks fifth in MLS and first on RSL with 76 dribbles completed. Also RSL’s most-fouled player, winning 70 fouls this season (ranking eighth in MLS). Ranks third on RSL with 49 chances created.
CAM Albert Rusnák (Slovakia/15 caps, 3 goals/24 years old/30 games, 28 starts (60, 57)/10 goals, 7 assists (17, 21)/FC Groningen (Holland)/DP) – Returns to the 11 after watching from the bench following international duty, where he scored his third international goal on Tuesday in a 1-1 draw in a friendly with Sweden. Has two goals and one assist in three career matches against the Timbers. Leads RSL and ranks seventh in MLS with 74 chances created.
LW Joao Plata (Ecuador/5 caps, 2 goals/26 years old/24 games, 19 starts (193, 162)/8 goals, 8 assists (48, 48)/Toronto FC/TAM) – Returns to the 11 after watching from the bench following international duty, where he played on Tuesday in 0-0 draw with Oman in a friendly. Leads current RSL players with four goals and four assists in 14 matches against the Timbers. Ranks second on RSL with 53 chances created.
FW Damir Kreilach (29 years old/32 games, 30 starts (32, 30)/12 goals, 8 assists (12, 8)/Union Berlin (Germany)/TAM) – Notched one goal and two assists on Thursday in a 4-1 win over the New England Revolution in the regular season home finale. Ranks second on the team in fouls won with 45 and fourth in tackles with 43.
GK Andrew Putna (23 years old/2 games, 1 start (2, 1)/1-0-0 (1-0-0), 0.67 GAA/Real Monarchs) – Signed with RSL in July. Made his first MLS start on Saturday, making two saves and earning a 2-1 win over the Houston Dynamo. Made his MLS debut last Wednesday, coming on at halftime in place of the injured Nick Rimando. Made four saves while allowing no goals in the final 45 minutes against LAFC. Has allowed three goals in two matches with Real Monarchs SLC this season, giving him six appearances in two seasons with the USL club. Earned two clean sheets with the Monarchs last season.
DF Nedum Onuoha (31 years old/2 games, 1 start (2, 1)/0 goals, 1 assists (0, 1)/Queens Park Rangers (England)) – Made his first MLS start on Thursday, earning an assist on the final goal in a 4-1 win over the New England Revolution. Also appeared off the bench in a 1-1 draw with Sporting Kansas City on September 30. Played the previous 14 seasons in the Premier League and Championship in England with Manchester City, Sunderland and Queens Park Rangers.
DF Danilo Acosta (USA/0 caps/20 years old/12 games, 10 starts (29, 26)/0 goals, 2 assists (0, 4)/Real Salt Lake Academy/HGP) – Came off the bench for his first appearance since July 14 as a second-half substitute in a 6-0 win over the Colorado Rapids on August 25. Ninth on the club with 27 tackles.
DF Nick Besler (25 years old/22 games, 15 starts (22, 15)/1 goals, 0 assists (1, 0)/Real Monarchs) – Scored his first MLS goal on Thursday in a 4-1 win over the New England Revolution. RSL is 2-0-0 when he starts in the midfield and 5-4-4 when he starts at center back. Overall, RSL is 11-5-6 in his 22 appearances. Was originally drafted by the Portland Timbers with the No. 5 overall pick in the 2015 MLS SuperDraft. After two seasons, he came to Real Monarchs in the USL where he captained the club to the USL regular season championship in 2017, signing with RSL prior to the end of the season.
FW Sebastian Saucedo (21 years old/27 games, 10 starts (56, 16)/3 goals, 5 assists (3, 7)/Real Salt Lake Academy) – Scored his third goal of the season and added his fifth assist on Thursday in a 4-1 win over the New England Revolution. Appeared off the bench in 10 of the last 13 matches, also starting in two other matches.
FW Corey Baird (22 years old/30 games, 21 starts (30, 21)/8 goals, 5 assists (8, 5)/Stanford/HGP) – Scored one goal and added an assist on Thursday in a 4-1 win over the New England Revolution. Leads all MLS rookies in scoring after scoring his eighth goal on Thursday, giving him goals in two consecutive matches after also scoring against the Portland Timbers on October 6.
FW Luis Silva (29 years old/19 games, 9 starts (157, 108)/5 goals, 0 assists (32, 16)/Tigres (Mexico)) – His last three goals have come in a substitute role, including stoppage-time goals in back-to-back home wins over Sporting Kansas City and FC Dallas in July. Has one goal and one assist in six career matches against the Timbers.