SANDY — Real Salt Lake returns to what it hopes will be the friendly confines of its home field tonight, looking to shake off a two-match skid in Major League Soccer action.
The Utah side hosts FC Dallas at 7 p.m. tonight at Rio Tinto Stadium in the third and final regular-season meeting between the two teams.
Salt Lake defeated Dallas 3-2 in the teams’ previous meeting this season in Utah, with defender Nat Borchers scoring deep in stoppage time of that match to lift Real to a thrilling victory over the Hoops.
In the first meeting this year, back on April 25, RSL rallied from a 1-0 deficit to earn a 1-1 draw in Frisco, Texas.
Adding to the difficulty of Real trying to end its brief slump is the fact that several mainstays in the lineup had midweek matches on international team duty.
Normal first-choice selections Kyle Beckerman, Will Johnson and Alvaro Saborio all went 90 minutes with their respective national teams, meaning that their inclusion in today’s lineup is in question. The trio will no doubt be present in the 18-man lineup, but are probably longshots to make a start. Goalkeeper Nick Rimando was also in Mexico on U.S. Men’s National Team duty on Wednesday, but didn’t play in the match and will likely make the start in goal.
Also questionable is midfieler Javier Morales, who left at halftime of Saturday’s 2-1 loss at Vancouver with adductor tightness.
Dallas, which spent much of the season mired in a 13-match winless streak, has won two straight and is unbeaten in its last three matches, including a 2-0 win at Vancouver on Wednesday night.