Minnesota United FC used goals from Kevin Molino, Christian Ramirez and Johan Venegas to earn its first victory in Major League Soccer, defeating Real Salt Lake 4-2 at TFC Bank Stadium on Saturday night.
Luke Mulholland gave the visitors the early lead when he jumped on ball in the box after United defender Francisco Calvo slipped while trying to clear it. However, Minnesota tied it twelve minutes later on a powerful header by Molino.
The Loons then broke the match open in the second half, with Christian Ramirez working a nifty give-and-go with Molino to give the home side its first lead. Ramirez added another when he pounced on a rare error from RSL goalkeeper Nick Rimando, and Johan Venegas finished the rout with a tap-in after another RSL defensive mistake.
- 4' – RSL – Luke Mulholland Watch
- 16' – MIN – Kevin Molino Watch
- 52' – MIN – Christian Ramirez Watch
- 62' – MIN – Christian Ramirez Watch
- 68' – MIN – Johan Venegas Watch
- 87' – RSL – Yura Movsisyan Watch
- SUPERMAN TO THE RESCUE: United forward Christian Ramirez notched the first multi-goal game for a United player in MLS on Saturday. Superman showed his strength on his first goal, holding up the ball while being challenged before finishing the quick give-and-go to put the Loons ahead. Ramirez put the game away with his second goal of the game, which was his fourth of the season.
- MINNESOTA HAS RSL'S NUMBER: It doesn't matter the nickname, or the location, but Minnesota appears to have RSL's number. In their first-ever meeting in 2005, Minnesota defeated RSL 6-4 in a U.S. Open Cup game played at James Griffin Stadium in St. Paul. In 2012, Minnesota again defeated Salt Lake in the Open Cup, claiming the 3-1 win at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy, Utah. (Oh, and if you want to take it further, the teams tied their only preseason game in February in Portland).
- RSL HURTING: Things did not get easier for new RSL head coach Mike Petke, who takes over a team in search of its first victory since August 2016. With a number of players already out with injuries, the visitors saw center back Aaron Maund leave with a reported left hamstring injury just 10 minutes into the game. Luke Mulholland then moved to right back, while Christ Wingert joined Justin Schmidt in central defense for the rest of the game.