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Real Salt Lake

RSL handed its first preseason loss as L.A. wins 1-0 in SoCal

First Published      Last Updated Feb 21 2017 03:42 pm

Real Salt Lake was handed its first preseason loss Tuesday in a closed-door match against the L.A. Galaxy in Southern California. The Galaxy topped RSL 1-0 behind a goal from Jaime Villarreal in the 40th minute.

Villarreal's game-winner was put on a platter by noted RSL thorn Emmanuel Boateng, who routinely punished RSL's defense in his debut season with the Galaxy in 2016. RSL coach Jeff Cassar deployed what was largely a second-team lineup for the first half. Midfielder Ricardo Velazco nearly put RSL up 1-0 in the 33rd minute, but his shot from distance zipped barely beyond the far post.



As L.A. took a 1-0 lead into halftime, Cassar changed out his lineup entirely. In came starters such as Nick Rimando, Tony Beltran, Demar Phillps, Sunday Stephen, Albert Rusnák, Jordan Allen, Yura Movsisyan and Joao Plata. Midfielder Luke Mulholland continues to play in the two-man defensive midfield alongside Sunny as RSL captain Kyle Beckerman continues to deal with a lingering bone bruise in his left knee.

The 34-year-old midfielder has yet to play a preseason match since camp started at the end of January.

There weren't many highlights to speak of in the second half. New L.A. midfielder Jermaine Jones slammed a shot off the post in the 71st minute and Phillips, RSL's starting left back, left the match with a knock in the 77th minute.

RSL closes out its preseason schedule with the final match leading up to the season-opener on March 4 against Toronto FC set to be played Friday against Armenian club Alashkert. Kick off is scheduled for 1 p.m.

-Chris Kamrani

Twitter: @chriskamrani

 

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