For Real Salt Lake, the goal at BMO Field has a lid on it, or at least that’s the way it seems after Saturday night’s 1-0 loss to Toronto FC.
The match marked RSL’s fifth visit to Toronto in league play and they have failed to score a goal in each of those visits. And it’s not like they haven’t had any chances. On Saturday night they put up 16 shots, including several from point-blank range, but came away with nothing to show for it.
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“I really feel that we were unfortunate tonight,” RSL manager Jason Kreis told ESPN700 radio after the match. “I feel like the guys put in a great effort and put in the right amount of chances. I feel if we could have scored the first goal, we probably would have handled things from there very well.”
“I think we were the much better team tonight,” added RSL’s Canadian midfielder Will Johnson. “As far as chances go, I think it was extremely one-sided [in RSL’s favor], but if you don’t put your chances away you always leave yourself open for some kind of lucky goal, and that’s what happened.”
Chances are one thing that RSL has had plenty of on the road in Toronto. They’ve put up a whopping 54 shots in the five all-time matches and 26 of those attempts have been on target. But for some reason, RSL have been snake bitten at BMO. Take for instance, Johnson’s excellent opportunity at a late equalizer on a flying volley which was saved by TFC’s goalkeeper.
“I didn’t have a whole lot of goal to work with,” explained the Johnson. “From that angle – an acrobatic kick – you just try to hit the target. The ‘keeper made a good save. That just sums up our night. Frustrating – we’ve got to put teams like this away early or it just comes back to haunt us.”
The team’s misfortune goes beyond just the result. Left back Chris Wingert left the field in the 32nd minute and a club spokesman confirmed that he has two broken bones in his left wrist. He was taken to a local hospital for a cast and is expected to fly back to Utah with the rest of the team on Sunday.
“It just wasn’t our night tonight,” Kreis said. “I just think we have to walk away and say it’s an unfortunate situation.”