Sandy • Real Salt Lake began a potentially extended stretch of its season this week without goalie Nick Rimando and midfielder Kyle Beckerman.
Neither Rimando nor Beckerman participated in Wednesday’s 90-minute workout at the team’s practice facility after being invited to the U.S. national team’s training camp in Orlando.
National team training runs though May 25, when a 23-player roster will be finalized.
Beckerman and Rimando could miss three games for RSL: a regular-season match against FC Dallas on May 26 and two games in the U.S. Open Cup (May 29 and June 5).
“It’s always good in one way and bad in other,” coach Jason Kreis said. “It’s good that those guys get the recognition they deserve and get to represent our country. It’s a lifetime experience.
“… The bad is to potentially not have two of our very important players around for a month,” he added. “That’s a very long time. Those guys raise the level of a training session every single day. So it’s going to hurt.”
Prime minutes for reserves
In the absence of Rimando and Beckerman, backups Kyle Reynish and Yordany Alvarez will get for some prime-time minutes in the coming weeks.
With teammate Sebastian Velasquez translating, Alvarez said, “It’s a very important role. But I am going to be up for what it takes.
“I’m ready. That’s what I’ve been waiting for. A competitor is always waiting for the opportunity and I’m ready to take it on.”
Said Reynish: “… Definitely nice to maybe get [into] a string of games.”
During a 0-0 draw at Chicago last week, Reynish played for the first time this season because Rimando was injured.
“It’s nice to get that first one out of the way without having any real mishaps,” Reynish said. “… But, really, it wasn’t too tough of a game [because] the defense played so well. I didn’t have much to do.”
After giving up at least one goal in four straight games, RSL has blanked Chicago (0-0) and Seattle (1-0) in its last two outings to earn four points in the standings.
“It’s always good to feel you’re going to get a shutout,” Kreis said. “It’s always good to feel you can go anywhere and hold any team to a zero if you are really, really focused. And we’ve been really, really focused on that the last two matches.”
P FC Dallas at RSL, May 26, 7 p.m.
TV • CW30
U.S. Open Cup
Real Salt Lake will play the winner of the first-round game between the Minnesota Stars and the Des Moines Menace in the 2012 U.S. Open Cup on May 29. If Minnesota wins, RSL plays on the road. If Des Moines wins, the game will be played at Rio Tinto Stadium at 7 p.m.