SANDY, Utah — Real Salt Lake will be missing a key component on Wednesday as they take on the Chicago Fire (8:30 pm ET, watch LIVE online).
They’ll be without the services of goalkeeper Nick Rimando. The 13-year veteran suffered a minor shoulder injury during last Saturday’s 2-1 win against the New England Revolution.
Rimando suffered the injury making a save, keeping the ball out of the back of the net but leaving himself vulnerable to injury. The injury, classified as a right shoulder impingement, is a minor one, but RSL aren't taking any chances with their diminutive goalkeeper.
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“It was a really courageous play on Nick’s part, but when you leave your arm extended out there in a weak position you’re vulnerable to take knocks like he did,” goalkeeper coach Jeff Cassar said of the play.
Missing the veteran 'keeper could be a big loss, as Rimando has already won three Save of the Week awards this season and has two saves nominated for the award again this week. Still, the knock isn't considered serious, and RSL expect their rock in net could be back as soon as this weekend.
“Fortunately, the recovery is expected to be a quick one,” explained Cassar. “The doctors feel that this is something that with a few days is going to be fine, and he’s going to come back 100 percent, really quickly.”
However, Cassar is bullish on Reynish, Rimando’s backup. The reserve 'keeper, now in his sixth season, has not lost in his previous four starts.
“It’s funny how things work out,” said Cassar, who indicated that he feels Reynish is a goalkeeper capable of demanding a starting spot. “We’ve been trying to get Kyle a game in these stretches of three games in a week. We feel like we’re blessed to have that kind of player that can step in and start.”
Along with Rimando’s absence, the team will also look to fill in for missing midfielder Will Johnson, who will be serving a red card suspension. Luis Gil, Sebastian Velasquez and Jonny Steele are all possibilities to fill in on the left side against Chicago.