Real Salt Lake advanced to its second-ever MLS Cup Sunday by defeating the Portland Timbers 1-0 (5-2 aggregate).
The win means Salt Lake will travel to Sporting Kansas City for MLS Cup on Saturday December 7th.
Salt Lake came into Sunday’s tie up two goals in the series, meaning a win, draw, or one-goal loss would see them through to MLS Cup, while a two-goal loss would force overtime. The visitors took an early lead in the match and the two-goal cushion Jason Kreis’ men brought with them was never in doubt.
Salt Lake came out attacking. The visitors had the first good chance of the match in the 5th minute when Devon Sandoval headed a Javier Morales free kick down into the turf, and the ball bounced just over the crossbar.
Portland had early chances as well. In the 9th minute, Frederic Piquionne sent a dangerous cross into the Salt Lake box that Diego Valeri couldn’t quite get to.
Valeri kept the chances up, firing a loose ball at the Salt Lake frame twice in the 21st minute; however, Chris Schuler and Kyle Beckerman each blocked a shot and kept the second leg scoreless.
Salt Lake continued to attack and it paid off in the 29th minute when a Luis Gil shot from distance left a rebound in front of the Portland goal, which Robbie Findley beat his man to and scored.
The Timbers continued to attack and thought they had scored a couple times, but both were waved off for a corner kick that went out of bounds and an offside. The Timbers Army rained vulgar chants at the officials, but both calls were correct.
Portland also suffered from two first half injuries that cost Caleb Porter his first two substitutions. Both Piquionne and Rodney Wallace had to leave, putting the Timbers manager in an even bigger hole.
The half ended with Real Salt Lake up 1-0 in the second leg and looking like a heavy favorite to advance.
The second half played as a back and forth affair with both sides getting chances, but the Timbers were unable to secure even a single goal to bring the match within two. As a result, Salt Lake advanced comfortably to MLS Cup.
Category: Game Review