SANDY, Utah (ABC4 Sports) – What a start to the season for Rubio Rubín and Real Salt Lake.
After recording two assists in RSL’s season-opening win against Minnesota United last week, Rubín scored two second-half goals and Real Salt Lake beat Sporting Kansas City 3-1.
“It just shows we were working hard in the preseason and the last game in Minnesota, and we knew that we could come to this game and also get three points at home in our home opener and we got the job done,” Rubin said.
After Alan Pulido opened the scoring in the 17th minute for Sporting KC, Damir Kreilach found the equalizer in the 35th minute, heading home a cross from Andrew Brody, who was making his MLS debut.
Rubín gave Salt Lake a 2-1 lead in the 52nd minute with his first MLS goal and scored again in the 77th minute with a low-skidding strike from the top left corner of the 18-yard box. Both goals were assisted by Kreilach.
“We just know that other teams struggle with elevation,” Rubin said. “It’s difficult for away teams to play here, so we use that to our advantage. We just kept attacking and just kept pressing and found ourselves to get the second and third goal.”
After giving up the goal to Pulido, Real Salt Lake did not give up another shot on frame the rest of the match.
“We showed some guts and some resilience,” said RSL head coach Freddy Juarez. “We control the game in moments of possession, and other times we had to control the game with our defense.”
Real Salt Lake (2-0-0) is one of just two MLS teams to open the 2021 season with six points.
RSL next hosts San Jose Friday, May 7th at 7:30 p.m. at Rio Tinto Stadium.