Recap: RSL Outlasts NYCFC In Salt Lake City

by Anthony J. Merced

NYCFC’s four match unbeaten streak came to an end as Real Salt Lake won Wednesday night’s match 2-1 at Rio Tinto Stadium. A second half goal from Aaron Maund was the deciding factor for RSL which gave the home team their first win in over a month.

“The defeat today is mine,” said head coach Patrick Vieira. “It’s me who is responsible for the loss today because the selection of the team wasn’t good enough to compete against Salt Lake and I take full responsibility for the performance of the team today.”

Vieira selected a younger side, electing to give mainstays like David Villa, Rodney Wallace and Jack Harrison a day off ahead of Sunday’s game against Orlando City. Still, the team sent out was a talented side that included Tommy McNamara – who wore the captian’s armbad – Ugo Okoli and Andrea Pirlo. Unfortunately, that combination wasn’t able to piece together the type of performance the club is accustomed to seeing on the field.

Everything seemed fine to start the game. Okoli scored his first career MLS goal in the fourth minute after the ball ping-ponged off an RSL midfielder and found the foot of the 24-year old beyond the back line. NYCFC kept the momentum going as they got a chance to double the lead in the 15th minute but McNamara couldn’t get a handle on an open shot at goal.

Salt Lake gained in confidence as the first half wore on, leading to Albert Rusnak’s goal in the 39th minute. The shot came through traffic from the top of the box, beating a diving Sean Johnson. From there RSL would take the lead early in the second half when Aaron Maund headed in a corner kick. The goal would solidify the win for Mike Petke’s team and send NYCFC away with only one point thus far on their four-game road trip.

Next up is a tough trip to Orlando City where New York City lost their first game of the season. Jason Kreis has proven to have the winning formula against Patrick Vieira, but a refreshed starting lineup will attempt to turn this trip into a positive one.

Starting XI:

NYCFC: Johnson; White, Brillant, Callens, Allen; Moralez, Pirlo, Ring; Camargo (54′ Harrison), Okoli (70′ Stertzer), McNamara (54′ Villa)

Real Salt Lake: Rimando; Wingert, Maund, Schuler, Schmidt; Muholland, Beckerman, Rusnak (84′ Sunny); Savarino (88′ Holness), Movsisyan (45′ Silva), Plata

Scoring Summary:

4′ (NYCFC) Sean Okoli (1)

39′ (RSL) Albert Rusnak (3) assisted by Jefferson Saverino (1)

51′ (RSL) Aaron Maund (1) assisted by Albert Rusnak (4)

Discipline:

16′ (RSL) Yura Movsisyan YELLOW CARD

21′ (NYCFC) Ethan White YELLOW CARD

23′ (RSL) Chris Schuler YELLOW CARD

45′ (NYCFC) Tommy McNamara YELLOW CARD