Soccer: Real Salt Lake fails to take advantage of schedule
Sandy • Real Salt Lake coach Jason Kreis' world is all about soccer.
"There's so much injustice in the world right now," Kreis said following Saturday's 2-1 loss to San Jose.
What was lost Saturday, as well as Wednesday when the Los Angeles Galaxy marched out of Rio Tinto Stadium clutching a 3-2 victory, was a golden opportunity.
Because of RSL's great home record, it had put itself in an enviable position within MLS as well as CONCACAF competition.
On top of the Western Conference standings Wednesday, RSL's schedule looked mighty friendly with six of its next eight matches at Rio Tinto. And coming out of a 16-day break, RSL looked great in beating Chivas USA on its home turf.
Is that advantage, as well as six points, gone?
"It seems like every time everybody says we're in a great situation, we lose," Kreis said. "So, for me, the only great situation is when you have won and then you can talk about it.
"Talking about it before games are played is useless."
Those six points would have kept Real in a comfortable position with the ability to concentrate on CONCACAF matches in August. Then again, RSL, which plays Saturday at Columbus, has done well on the road.
Last season, RSL came within a home loss of qualifying for the Club World Cup in Japan.
"We came out of the break with a great result at Chivas," RSL defender Ned Grabavoy said. "And you come home, you have two really big games against two Western Conference teams that will probably be around late in the season. So, to lose games like we have at home, how could you not be disappointed and feel like you definitely dropped a big opportunity?"
Coming into Wednesday's game, RSL (10-5-2) had earned a league-high 32 points. Real was also 6-1-0 at home.
Still, RSL is in the best position it has ever been in after 17 games. Yet, as Kreis mentioned Saturday, his team is cycling downward.
Kreis also made a point of saying he never looks forward.
"I didn't hear any of that," he said. "Maybe it's because I don't read what's written about us. Maybe there's too many people that do in the locker room, read what's written about us."
Blame it on Rio?
• Real Salt Lake loses two straight at Rio Tinto Stadium, beginning a stretch of playing six of eight games at home.
• RSL has lost back-to-back home games in MLS competition for the first time in Rio Tinto.
RSL at Crew
P Saturday, 6 p.m.
TV • CW30
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