SAN JOSE (ABC4 Sports) – It has been a rough go on the road this season for Real Salt Lake, so to come away with one point against the last place team in the Western Conference has to be considered a success.
Nick Rimando made three saves for his 143rd career shutout, as Real Salt Lake played San Jose to a scoreless draw Saturday night.
RSL is now 1-8-2 on the road, and 9-9-4 overall on the season, as they stay above the playoff line in 6th place in the Western Conference with 31 points.
“You’re never satisfied, you always want to collect three points,” said active head coach Freddy Juarez, who led RSL for the second straight game with Mike Petke suspended. “But zero away against a desperate team no matter what people say, you look at teams at the bottom of the table, they never play that way. We know they’re a dangerous team with players that can score and are great at the counter-attack. We felt we handled the counter-attack pretty well.”
The match started inauspiciously as starting midfielder Albert Rusnak went down in the 7th miinute with an undisclosed upper body injury and was unable to return.
The first half was rather uneventful, but both teams had great scoring chances after intermission.
Justen Glad almost converted a scoring opportunity off of a set piece, but San Jose goalkeeper Andrew Tarbell made a sprawling one-handed save.
San Jose almost scored on the counter-attack, as Magnus Eriksson’s chip over Rimando, who had come out of the net, went just wide.
The Quakes best scoring chance came a few minutes later when Quincy Amerikwa got behind the defender, and his sliding shot was deflected by Rimando off the crossbar to keep the game scoreless.
“It was just one of those games,” said RSL captain Kyle Beckerman. “San Jose is getting desperate so we knew they were going to bring everything they had and they weren’t going to let it be easy no matter where they are in the standings. We made sure we were focused. We felt like if we could get a shutout that we would eventually get a goal. It didn’t come tonight, but there were a lot of good things. I’m really proud of the guys and it was a step in the right direction on the road.”
Both teams put three shots on frame in the match.
This was RSL’s first road result since topping Seattle Sounders FC 1-0 on May 26th.
Real Salt Lake now returns home to take on the Chicago Fire August 4th at 8:00 p.m. at Rio Tinto Stadium.