SANDY, Utah (ABC4 Sports) – Real Salt Lake is one of the hottest teams in Major League Soccer right now.
Bobby Wood, Sergio Cordova and Justen Glad all scored goals as RSL won its third straight game, shutting out the Houston Dynamo, 3-0.
RSL remains unbeaten at Rio Tinto Stadium this year, now 5-0-1 in front of the home fans, matching the club’s best home record to start a season. Real Salt Lake has outscored its opponents 11-4 during this stretch.
“I thought it was a fantastic performance,” said RSL head coach Pablo Mastroeni. “The last two [victories] have been really good, and I think we just keep building on it.”
“The vibes are great,” said defender Aaron Herrera. “The stadium has been loud so far this year. We’ve been packing the house every game and it’s been awesome. It really brings the energy for us and keeps us going.”
Wood opened the scoring with his third goal of the season in the 29th minute, heading home a brilliant pass from Mikael Chang to give RSL a 1-0 lead at the half.
Houston nearly leveled the match in the 51st minute, but Zac MacMath made a sprawling save on a header from Thorleifur Ulfarsson. MacMath made four saves in all, for his fifth shutout of the season.
“Overall, what a great team performance,” MacMath said. “Building off a huge win in Montreal, I thought we really all put it together. Three different goal scorers, three unbelievable goals, and another shutout from the guys in front of me, which is huge.”
RSL then took a 2-0 lead when Cordova scored his third goal of the season, and second goal in as many weeks. Jasper Loeffelsend sent in a cross from the right side, Cordova chested it around one defender with his first touch, and chipped a shot that goalkeeper Michael Nelson got a hand on, but could not keep from crossing the line.
Then in stoppage time, Glad found the back of the net on a diving header off a free kick from Justin Meram to salt the game away.
“I couldn’t be more proud of the effort,” Mastroeni said. “The quality, the goals, the defending in the back was fantastic. Zac in goal was great. Just an all-around fantastic performance.”
Jefferson Savarino came off the bench in the 71st minute to mark his first action for RSL since 2019 after his recent transfer from Brazilian club Atletico Mineiro.
RSL (7-3-4) moves into third place in the Western Conference standings headed into next Saturday’s showdown at Vancouver.
“We’re in a great spot,” Glad said. “The team’s in a groove right now. The players are happy, it’s a good vibe in the locker room. We just got Savarino back, we’re in a good spot for sure. We just need to keep the momentum going.”