Get breaking news alerts via email

Click here to manage your alerts
(Rick Egan | The Salt Lake Tribune) Real Salt Lake's Kyle Beckerman (5) celebrates after scoring Salt Lake's first goal of the night, early in the first period, Saturday, April 28, 2012.
RSL: Private jet will whisk Real players to crucial game — along with opponent
MLS » Seattle’s Johnson will join Salt Lake’s Beckerman, Rimando on RSL co-owner’s plane.
First Published Oct 15 2012 02:06 pm • Last Updated Feb 07 2013 11:31 pm

Sandy • Important playoff seeding is at stake, so Real Salt Lake has arranged for a private plane to ferry two of its best players to its Major League Soccer game in Seattle on Wednesday night, barely 24 hours after they suit up for the U.S. national team in a crucial World Cup qualifier in Kansas City, Kan.

But get this:

At a glance

Real Salt Lake at Seattle

Wednesday, 8 p.m.

TV » NBC Sports Network, 9 p.m., CW30 (delayed)

Join the Discussion
Post a Comment

It’s giving its opponent a ride, too.

Seattle’s Eddie Johnson will join RSL’s Kyle Beckerman and Nick Rimando on the flight aboard team co-owner Dell Loy Hansen’s private jet, team officials said. The flight will leave right after the Americans play Guatemala on Tuesday night, assuring the players get to Seattle in plenty of time for RSL to meet Johnson and the Sounders at CenturyLink Field on Wednesday night.

"We’re doing Seattle a big solid, I think," coach Jason Kreis said. "Hopefully, the good karma will come back to us."

It’s hard to imagine such an arrangement in any other major professional sport, especially with the stakes so high.

Johnson is the Sounders’ leading scorer with 14 goals and two assists this season, and his team is battling RSL for playoff position in one of the last regular-season games of the year. Both teams hope to avoid a new wild-card game that would make it even more difficult to reach the MLS Cup championship game, and RSL can do that with a victory against the Sounders.

But general manager Garth Lagerwey echoed Kreis in saying it was simply "the right thing to do" to allow Johnson on their flight.

"I would imagine what goes around comes around," Lagerwey said.

Kreis acknowledged that the idea made him a little uncomfortable, at first.

story continues below
story continues below

"Your initial response is, ‘I don’t know if this is such a good idea, to be helping our opponent,’" Kreis said. "But you have to believe they would do that same if they were in our shoes. Ultimately we want the best game possible, which means the best players available."

Of course, there is a little caveat here.

Neither Rimando nor Beckerman is expected to play much for the U.S. against the Guatemalans, after not playing at all in a 2-1 victory at Antigua and Barbuda last week. So they figure to be fresh and ready to play for RSL against the Sounders.

But Johnson was a star for the Americans against Antigua and Barbuda, scoring both goals and setting himself up for an encore opportunity against the Guatemalans. In other words, Kreis is hoping the striker plays 90 minutes again, so he’s too worn out to play for the Sounders the next night against RSL

"Absolutely," Kreis said. "I hope there’s a few extra minutes to play, as well."


Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Top Reader Comments Read All Comments Post a Comment
Click here to read all comments   Click here to post a comment

About Reader Comments

Reader comments on sltrib.com are the opinions of the writer, not The Salt Lake Tribune. We will delete comments containing obscenities, personal attacks and inappropriate or offensive remarks. Flagrant or repeat violators will be banned. If you see an objectionable comment, please alert us by clicking the arrow on the upper right side of the comment and selecting "Flag comment as inappropriate". If you've recently registered with Disqus or aren't seeing your comments immediately, you may need to verify your email address. To do so, visit disqus.com/account.
See more about comments here.
Staying Connected
Contests and Promotions
  • Search Obituaries
  • Place an Obituary

  • Search Cars
  • Search Homes
  • Search Jobs
  • Search Marketplace
  • Search Legal Notices

  • Other Services
  • Advertise With Us
  • Subscribe to the Newspaper
  • Access your e-Edition
  • Frequently Asked Questions
  • Contact a newsroom staff member
  • Access the Trib Archives
  • Privacy Policy
  • Missing your paper? Need to place your paper on vacation hold? For this and any other subscription related needs, click here or call 801.204.6100.