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(Kim Raff | The Salt Lake Tribune) Real Salt Lake goalkeeper Nick Rimando (18) makes a diving save during a penalty kick by Chivas USA midfielder Edgar Mejia (8) during the first half of a game at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy on April 20, 2013.
Real Salt Lake’s Nick Rimando shouldering a big load
MLS » Goalkeeper feels pressure behind revamped lineup.
First Published Apr 30 2013 03:02 pm • Last Updated May 01 2013 09:02 am

Sandy • With 30 saves in eight games this season, Real Salt Lake goalkeeper Nick Rimando is tied for third-most in Major League Soccer, and is on pace to record his biggest save total since his first season with RSL.

That’s not necessarily a good thing.

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"Thirty-plus chances on goal in eight games is way too much," the veteran said after training Tuesday.

The losses of center back Jamison Olave and midfielder Will Johnson this offseason combined with early-season injuries to back line starters Nat Borchers and Chris Wingert had RSL ready for some bumps.

"It’s something we were prepared for with the changeover," Rimando said. "We’re still trying to figure that out."

The goalkeeper, who has allowed seven goals this season, also attributed his increased workload to improved offensive play around Major League Soccer, as well as to team’s adjusting to RSL’s diamond midfield.

Right back Tony Beltran said the team’s defensive four has to be sharper and more focused.

"Really, that’s on us to just go out there and do the right things and go out there with the mentality that we need this zero and we’re not going to give anything up," Beltran said. "[Rimando is] such a beast in the back for us and he saves a lot of games. But I don’t want him to have 30 saves. I want him to have as few saves as possible and give him the least amount of work to do."

Coming off a 2-0 loss at Los Angeles, coach Jason Kreis had a somewhat different take.

"I wish he had 32," the RSL boss said.


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Strained strikers

Forward Alvaro Saborio is expected to miss "several weeks" with a strained quadricep. The Costa Rican injured himself last week during training and tried to play Saturday against the Galaxy before he was scratched from the team’s starting lineup.

Forwards Robbie Findley and Olmes Garcia are day to day with knee and adductor injuries, respectively.

Sweet Carolina

Midfielder Enzo Martinez has been sent to the Carolina Railhawks of the North American Soccer League. After being drafted by RSL a year ago, Martinez has failed to make an appearance with RSL’s first team. The North Carolina product should see valuable minutes during the short-term loan.

afalk@sltrib.com

Twitter: @aaronfalk



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