SANDY, Utah (ABC 4 Sports) - It's an early season clash of the titans this Saturday as the top two teams in MLS, Real Salt Lake (5-1) and Sporting Kansas City (5-0) hook go at it. But RSL players are downplaying the significance of the match.
"Not to me," said midfielder Kyle Beckerman when asked if this was the biggest match of the season so far. "Maybe to you guys or for all our fans. But for me, it's just another game."
"It's a big game just because of the records that we both have," said head coach Jason Kreis. "But it's still only worth three points the last time I checked."
Because this will be just the sixth game of the season, RSL said it's not that important to be at the top of the league standings at this time of the year.
"I'm sure it will be talked about afterwards, but I don't think we're too concerned about being the best team right now," said defender Chris Wingert. "Don't get me wrong, we'd like to be [atop the standings], but it's much more important to be the best team later on."
"We look at it as a big challenge," said defender Nat Borchers. "To play on the road against a team that has really just dominated everybody else in the league this year."
Sporting Kansas City is undefeated, and has allowed just one goal the entire season. So, Real knows it will be important to keep control of the match.
"They're a very difficult team to play against," said Kreis. "It's a very disruptive team. They put a lot of players in your half of the field and don't allow you to play, which can be difficult for us because we like to have possession for long stretches."
If RSL is able to pull off a victory, they will set a mark for the best start to a season in franchise history. But they're not ready to crown this team as the best they've ever had.
"It's too early to say that," said goalkeeper Nick Rimando. "We're confident and we're a good team. We've won a championship with the majority of these guys, so there's no reason to say that we can't go out and do it again this year."
"We haven't even played our best soccer yet," said Wingert. "We're happy with our record, but we know we can play better."
Real Salt Lake's game against Sporting Kansas City can be seen on CW-30 at 6:30 this Saturday, April 14th.