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Chris Kamrani
Chris Kamrani covers Real Salt Lake for the Tribune.

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Real Salt Lake usually plays well in Seattle

Real Salt Lake coach Jason Kreis and his players will not train today after doing so in the cold, rain and wind on Friday and Saturday.

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Perhaps practicing in such conditions will help get RSL ready for Wednesday night's critically-important Major League Soccer game at Seattle, where Real has traditionally fared well.

On May 12, Fabian Espindola's goal on the 50th minute gave Real Salt Lake a 1-0 victory over the Sounders. In 2009, RSL won the MLS Cup with a victory over the L.A. Galaxy at Qwest Field, which is now CenturyLink Field.

"For whatever reason, we tend to play pretty well there," Kreis said. "I don't feel we've ever been there and not performed well. We've had games where we didn't get the results we liked. But I've always felt like the guys are up for the game there, probably because of how awesome the crowd is. It's just a really, really fun atmosphere. Guys always get up for it and I don't expect anything different next Wednesday."

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Real Salt Lake has two MLS regular-season games remaining - at Seattle and against Vancouver at Rio Tinto Stadium on Oct. 27.

Kreis feels his players are taking the right approach to their jobs in the search for a successful finish.

"For the last couple of weeks, it's been really fun," he said. "Guys have really trained hard. Everybody has been very keen to try and contribute in any fashion they can. That's making the training sessions better. .... Everybody is pulling together right now -- pulling in the same direction. This is the fun time of the year and this year it's no different."

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In case you missed it, Real Salt Lake announced this week it will participate in the 2013 Desert Diamond Cup preseason tournament, which will be played Feb 13-23 at Kino Veteran Memorial Stadium in Tucson.

This will be RSL’s second-consecutive year participating in the Desert Diamond Cup. Real finished third in the 2012 tournament, beating the New York Red Bulls in the third-place game after failing to qualify for the final.

RSL will be joined in Tucson by three other Major League Soccer teams, including the Seattle Sounders FC, the New England Revolution and the New York Red Bulls. The final will be televised live on the NBC Sports Network.

-- Steve Luhm



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