Kansas City, Kan. • Even though it's April, Saturday night's clash between Major League Soccer conference leaders Real Salt Lake and Sporting KC had some folks dreaming about a rematch for the MLS Cup.
RSL's 1-0 loss to Sporting KC at Livestrong Sporting Park is the only time the two teams will meet in the regular season. RSL coach Jason Kreis hinted at a rematch sort of after the game.
"They do such a tremendous job of battling and fighting, all of the players out there," Kreis said of Sporting KC, which improved to an MLS-best 6-0 (18 points). "We have to figure out solutions to that. I still think that there's ways to play against them, rather than just trying to get behind them all the time."
"So the next time we play them, which I guess isn't until next year, we'll have to improve upon that."
But what about playing again for the MLS Cup?
"I never said that we would," Kreis said. "I'm not conceding anything."
Count goalkeeper Nick Rimando and captain Kyle Beckerman as two players who wouldn't mind another crack at Sporting KC.
"We're not scared or afraid of anybody," Rimando said. "We love challenges, and this was another challenge for us. I think everybody in this [locker] room could tell you they want to go out and play this game again and meet them up. Who knows if we meet them up sooner or later, but it would be great to play them again."
As for the MLS Cup talk, Beckerman deflected that back on the media.
"That's you guys. That's all you guys," Beckerman said while talking to reporters. "We didn't say anything about any MLS Cup. We came here to play an away game that we had to play, and that's all it was for us. Win, lose or draw, we were going to have 30 games, 28 more, so there's a lot of work to be done. Even if we won the game, it wasn't going to crown anybody a champion, and it wasn't going send anybody home for the season. We'll lick our wounds, and we'll come back.
"We'd love to see those guys again."