Real Salt Lake headed to Minnesota for their first U.S. Open Cup game on July 17 looking for a win. Disappointed in a knock-out loss, they didn't come away empty handed.
RSL discovered the strength of forward Melvin Tarley, who earned a shot at the big leagues in the process.
On Wednesday, Tarley proved the lone bright spot in Real's loss to D.C. United, scoring the lone goal. He proved to be a solid threat again Saturday against New England at Rice-Eccles Stadium.
"I think that my strength and my height help," Tarley said following his club's 1-0 loss. "I get up and play the ball with my head a lot."
With a speedy, but small, player like Jason Kries already firmly entrenched in the lineup, a bigger target forward has given Real's offense another type of weapon. By his own admission, it is a weapon that needs a bit of tuning.
"The game (on the MLS level) is faster and strong," Tarley said. "You have got to play the ball fast and use your strength."
But after helping his former club dismantle three MLS teams, Tarley seems to be making the adjustment quite well.
"I think that I am getting better, getting to know the guys and what I need to do on the field," Tarley said.
As Tarley continues to learn, he continues to show his potential and confidence that he will grow into a force as a member of Real Salt Lake.
"I have some great success against MLS teams and I am learning to contribute to the team on the field," Tarley concluded.
His career stats seem to show that with seven career goals against MLS opponents in five games.
David Hale is a contributor to MLSnet.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Soccer or its clubs.