SANDY -- After seeing its CONCACAF Champions League dreams evaporate on Tuesday night, Real Salt Lake will look to quickly bounce back and regain its forward momentum heading into the postseason.
Salt Lake hosts Vancouver tonight at 7 p.m. at Rio Tinto Stadium in its final regular-season match before opening the Major League Soccer Cup playoffs next week against Seattle. Tonight's match will be televised live on CW30.
"We'll just try and pick ourselves up and turn it around," said Real midfielder Kyle Beckerman after RSL was knocked out of the CONCACAF tournament with a 0-0 draw. "We've got some really important games coming up so we can still have a really good season if we get our stuff together."
While Real is already locked into a first-round playoff series with Seattle for the second straight year, home-pitch advantage in series will be determined by tonight's outcome, as well as that of the Sounders' finale against Los Angeles on Sunday.
In order to claim the No. 2 spot on the Western Conference table, RSL needs to finish ahead of Seattle in total point, meaning that it will need a win and Seattle draw or loss, or a draw and a Seattle loss in order to move up.
Moving up could also be a critical step for the team in qualifying for CONCACAF Champions League play next season. Real currently sits at fifth in the overall league table, but could move up as high as third pending the results of this weekend's matches. With Supporter's Shield winner San Jose and U.S. Open Cup winner Kansas City already having earned spot Champions League spot, should either of those teams -- or both -- advance to the MLS Cup, then remaining MLS berths in the regional tournament go to the team with the next highest point total.
Of course, Real can still qualify by making it to the MLS Cup final as well.
"I think we have no choice really (but to move forward)," RSL central defender Nat Borchers said. "It's a tough loss we'll call it, obviously we didn't lose, but it feels like a loss. It was another result where we defended quite well and we attacked quite well. We had them in their end of the field the whole game, and like I said, I think it's something that we can move forward with and be very positive about."