Sebastian Saucedo’s first MLS goal lifted Real Salt Lake over the Seattle Sounders when they needed road points the most.
Real Salt Lake claimed its first road win of the season with a 1-0 victory over the Sounders at CenturyLink Field Saturday. RSL ended a five-match road losing streak as it handed the Sounders their seventh shutout in 10 league matches.
“A lot of fans criticize us for going away and not getting results,” Saucedo said, “but personally we don’t want to lose. You ask the whole team, we want to win, we want to get results. … Today, it hasn’t felt any better to get a win away from home.”
Saucedo opened the scoring in the 61st minute. From outside the penalty area, he lined a shot, slicing across the face of the goal and off the fingertips of Sounders goalkeeper Stefan Frei, into the upper far corner of the net.
“It was a beautiful strike,” RSL coach Mike Petke said after the match. “Bofo is someone that hits that in practice five, six times a week in the run of play, and it’s about time he did it in a game. And it couldn’t have come at a better time. So he has that quality and the confidence that he showed in front of this many people in a stadium like this, I’m proud of him.”
The Sounders had a flurry of shots in the first half, but RSL (5-6-1, 16 points) weathered the attack as Nick Rimando and his back line came up with some flashy blocks and saves.
Seattle had two chances midway through the first half to score first, but Rimando made saves in the 24th minute off shots by Seattle’s Magnus Wolff Eikrem and one minute later on a shot by Nouhou.
“We really came in with an approach to, in the beginning of the game, really set a line of where we wanted to be, be very compact vertically and horizontally, and they did that exactly,” Petke said. “Second half it was just a sense. We felt there was going to be a shift. We felt we were going to have more opportunities and it kind of opened up in the second half and we were able to find gaps.”
It was the first one-goal match RSL had been a part of since March. RSL, which had allowed 17 goals in its previous six road games, recorded its third shutout of the season and first away from home.