With last year’s MLS season being the kind that we had never witnessed before and in fairness that was not necessarily because of sporting reasons, a greater deal of anticipation was placed on the start of the 2021 campaign. Have a look at how Real Salt Lake Aiming For Better Fortunes.
One that has already generated a rather pleasing sight and that comes in the shape or perhaps the voice of hardened supporters getting behind the now 27 MLS franchises that are currently in existence today.
Of this new band of 27, one of those is Real Salt Lake and after being established themselves in 2004, they can be considered one of the more senior outfits within America’s top tier of professional soccer.
While although 2020 was a strange year off the field, it was also a year to forget on the field for Real Salt Lake and with the Rio Tinto Stadium outfit only finishing eleventh in the Western Conference, they would not be part of the playoffs at the end of the season.
Something that they will hope is not the case this time around and on the evidence of their first eight fixtures of this season, the pursuit of an extended campaign is one that very much hangs in the balance.
With a number of teams having games in hand over their counterparts at present, it is slightly difficult to get a steer on who really are the form teams and who is currently in something of a false position.
While with that in mind, it is perhaps fair to say that Freddy Juarez’s men currently find themselves lying somewhere in between and if they were to finish at their current placing, knockout soccer would be afforded to them.
That’s because the Utah based franchise find themselves lying seventh in the Western Conference at present and that position will be good enough to pay out the final playoff berth from this side of the bracket.
While the fact that they have played the least games in the Western Conference, is something that may set them in good stead. However, for all the advantage that may bring, you cannot beat getting points on the board.
Then again, there is plenty of opportunities for such a thing to happen and if the Claret and Cobalt as they are also known, can get a run of form together in the next few weeks, their situation will vastly improve.
When it comes to who will win the 2021 edition of the MLS, it is perhaps a little too early to look at the future odds, although Fox-bet have the team at +5000 at present and this would suggest they are considered one of the rank outsiders.
Which when you consider their relatively indifferent showing in 2020, that is not the biggest surprise and with the previous MLS campaign being one that was so disrupted, there were always going to be a number of franchises who failed to deal with what was going on around them.
Whether the effects of a global pandemic were the root cause for the Real Madrid inspired side’s failure last year can be argued, but it would be remiss to ignore this as playing some part in their overall shortcomings.
However, as the world pulls itself out of the grip of COVID-19, there is a great deal of vibrancy being generated throughout American soccer as a whole and it is fair to say that Real Salt Lake have found an element of swagger as of late.
A swagger that was certainly on display in their recent showing against the Vancouver Whitecaps and although they left it rather late to come out on top, they would manage to earn all three points at Rio Tinto Stadium.
With Damir Kreilach putting the hosts ahead two minutes before the interval, it made Freddy Juarez’s managerial team talk a lot easier at the interval. Then again, whatever he said, obviously fell on deaf ears, as the Whitecaps found parity 10 minutes after the restart.
A goal from Brian White saw the visitors back in the game and with the clock ticking down, it looked as if the points would be shared. However, Real Salt Lake had other ideas in mind and with two injury time goals to celebrate, it was a rather welcome win in terms of the upcoming playoff picture.