RSL short-handed as it seeks first Texas win

Mar 22 2013 - 9:05pm


For the third time in a four weekends, Real Salt Lake finds itself heading into hostile territory seeking out a trio of points.

The Claret-and-Cobalt, who will find themselves significantly short-handed for tonight's match, will take on FC Dallas tonight at FC Dallas Stadium in Frisco, Texas. Kickoff is set for 6:30 p.m. and will be televised live by KTVX.

Salt Lake will be missing five First XI players -- midfielder Kyle Beckerman, defenders Tony Beltran and Abdoulie Mansally, goalkeeper Nick Rimando and forward Alvaro Saborio -- who are currently with their respective national teams.

In addition, six other RSLers are unlikely to be in the lineup due to various ailments, leaving Salt Lake boss Jason Kreis with far fewer options than normal as his squad tries to accomplish something it never has -- winning in the Lone Star state.

RSL is 0-10-2 at Dallas across all competitions, including an 0-8-2 mark in Major League Soccer play. Those two draws, however, have occurred in the teams previous two forays into Frisco. In all, Real is 0-18-3 in all competitions in Texas.

Tonight's match will likely see the 2013 debut of veteran central defender Nat Borchers, who has been working his way back from a quadriceps injury since late January. His return should help lessen the blow of losing three of the five members of the team's defensive unit to national team duty.

Kreis will also face a bit of a quandary as to who to start up top with Robbie Findley. The likely choices are rookie Devon Sandoval and Joao Plata. Both have come off the bench this season, with all three of RSL's goals scored this year coming after Plata subbed into the match. Given Plata's efficiency coming in off the bench as a sub in the final half-hour, Sandoval seems the more likely choice to earn the starting not.

Yordany Alvarez will likely take on Beckerman's duties in the back half of the midfield, a position that he has regularly played when Beckerman hasn't been available, while Josh Saunders -- acquired this past offseason -- should get the starting nod in goal.



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