Sounders at Real Salt Lake MLS match 4 - Gamethread

Steve Zakuani's ability to abuse the right side is a key to victory - Casey Sapio-USA TODAY Sports

At 6 PM in the Wasatch Range, the contest between 2004 expandee and 2004 cast aside continues with their first match of the 2013 season. The Seattle Sounders look to continue their good fortune at Rio Tinto with their first win while Real Salt Lake hopes to keep the Rave Green down during their early season struggles.

The second and third best teams of the Sounders era will forever be tied together. The two communities faced off for the expansion that Salt Lake eventually won. Real Salt Lake would get their only major hardward on the grounds of what is now CenturyLink Field. Seattle Sounders FC would be better in overall league play, in overall CCL play and of course in the Open Cup. RSL can claim the best single CCL cycle due to their making the CCL Final.

These two teams are locked in a battle for second trying to chase down LA while holding off the other. One is fully committed to a diamond, though the cut of their gemstone is a bit different with a right lean and some sparkle in more places. Both added speedsters at forward since they met in the 2012 MLS Cup Playoffs. Both are reloading as they fell victims to the salary limitations of the League.

Tonight there are a few matchups that will determine victory. The Sounders need to use the space between Beckerman and the Claret & Cobalt backline. On the other end they have to stymie the point of the diamond which is manned by US U-20 Luis Gil. If there is a flank that will see the most action it is on the Sounders' left. Zakuani and Gonzalez (or Burch) will need to pressure Velasquez enough to force him to defend and pin fringe USMNT fullback Tony Beltran back. It is the league's best diamond against the league's best flank attack. It is not a referendum on style. It is a quest for three points.

TV: KONG 6/16/106 (Fletcher/Keller)
Radio: 97.3 FM (Fletcher/Keller)
Spanish TV: This-TV 4.2 (Mendez/Alcaraz-Cuellar)
Spanish Radio: 99.3 FM (Aleman/Hernandez)

Tactical Keys

  • Use the throughball
  • Fill the hole
  • Defend the middle

Player Matchups

How We're Watching
Scarf: Nos Audietis 2012
Kit: Long sleeve 2010 Shale Trainer
Where I'm Watching: Cassel's

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