Major League Soccer: Seattle Sounders vs Real Salt Lake
CenturyLink Field – Saturday, May 26th 2018 – 17:00 ET (22:00 BST)
UK TV Coverage – Live on Sky Sports Football
Seattle Sounders vs Real Salt Lake: Preview
Seattle Sounders take on Real Salt Lake on Saturday evening in a clash between two Western Conference rivals desperate to turn their form around. The two sides have lost 11 games combined already this season and need to improve. They will meet again next weekend at Rio Tinto Stadium so this is a big two weeks for both sides.
Seattle have only played nine games, fewer than anyone else in the West. But they have only managed to pick up eight points (2-5-2). They had mixed results in last week’s double gameweek, winning 2-1 at Toronto FC before losing 1-0 to a late goal at fierce rivals Portland Timbers.
The Sounders have a whole host of injuries to deal with and so Brian Schmetzer is having a tough job in getting men on the field. They will be glad to be returning home this weekend though, as they are unbeaten at home to Real Salt Lake in over six years.
RSL are not playing to the level many thought they would this season. Yes, it’s still early enough for them to turn it around, but they have lost three of their last four games. To make matters worse, they’ve conceded 11 goals in their past four games so defensively they are a mess at the moment.
— Real Salt Lake (@RealSaltLake) May 23, 2018
Mike Petke has watched his side lose five-straight away games. They took a point on opening weekend at FC Dallas but that remains their only road point from their past seven MLS games away from Rio Tinto.
The two sides met twice last season, with both sides taking a home victory each. The Sounders won 1-0 at CenturyLink last May in similarly bad form to that they are in now. But their win over RSL last May saw them turn things around as they only lost two of their next 18 matches after that win. And it was actually Real Salt Lake who ended the 13-game Sounders unbeaten run in September.
Seattle Sounders vs Real Salt Lake: Team News
❌ Suspensions: None.
❓ Doubts: Nicolas Lodeiro (toe fracture).
🚑 Out: Jordan Morris (torn ACL), Victor Rodriguez (right knee arthroscopy), Roman Torres (right hamstring strain), Osvaldo Alonso (left quad strain), Will Bruin (left heel pain).
Real Salt Lake
❌ Suspensions: None.
❓ Doubts: Joao Plata (quad injury).
🚑 Out: Tony Beltran (right knee surgery), Jordan Allen (knee injury), Alex Horwath (Achilles surgery), Shawn Barry (knee), Demar Phillips (ankle injury).
Seattle Sounders vs Real Salt Lake: Key Stats
Seattle Sounders’ MLS form: W/L/D/W/L
Real Salt Lake’s MLS form: W/L/L/W/L
Key stat: The home side has been victorious in this fixture in the past 13 MLS meetings. The last time the away side took a point from this fixture was 2012.
Seattle Sounders vs Real Salt Lake: Prediction
Seattle Sounders 2-1 Real Salt Lake: Both sides have problems to deal with and poor defensive records to try and fix. That should lead to both sides finding the net but the trend of the home side winning this fixture could well continue. Real Salt Lake’s shocking away form is a major concern so it’s hard to look past the Sounders just edging this one.