SANDY – Under the glow of the full moon, Real Salt Lake goalkeeper Nick Rimando broke Major League Soccer’s all-time shutout record on Saturday at Rio Tinto Stadium.
It was a double victory for Real, who won the match 3-0 against D.C. United. The win also puts the team at the top of the Western Conference.
They managed to secure the achievements even with two substitutions in the backfield. Even with two extra minutes in the match, D.C. United could not put a goal on the board.
The shut out record was previously held by retired goalkeeper Kevin Hartman, who ended his career with the New York Red Bulls.
“Feels good to hear those fans scream my name,” Rimando said. “We knew we had a lot more shutouts in this team, we know we were good enough to have them.”
Rimando said although his name is attached to the record, he earned the shutout along with his team mates.
The goalkeeper plans to continue playing for years to come.
“I don’t see myself slowing anytime soon,” Rimando said.
Real Salt Lake secured their victory early in the match.
With a nod of his head, forward Joao Plata knocked in the first goal with a header in the first 10 minutes of the match, with an assist by midfielder Luke Mulholland.
A few minutes later, defender Chris Schuler added a second goal to the board, from an assist by midfielder Javier Morales.
Schuler scored again at about the 23 minute mark, off of a corner kick by Morales.
The two teams came into the sold-out match both ranking second in their respective conferences.
“I felt things were going good right from the whistle,” RSL coach Jeff Cassar said. “We applied pressure early on.”
Real and D.C. United last faced off in the 2013 U.S. Open Cup Final held at Rio Tinto Stadium in October 2013. RSL lost the match 1-0, unable to overcome a goal scored by D.C. United midfielder Lewis Neal in the 45th minute.
RSL entered match after earning a 1-0 win over the Colorado Rapids on its home turf last week. The win secured the Rocky Mountain Cup for Real for the seventh time since 2006.
Real Salt Lake played the match without veteran defenders Tony Beltran and Chris Wingert on because of yellow card accumulation, as well as Aaron Maund who received a red card. The defenders received the suspensions during their match against Colorado.
Abdoulie Mansally replaced Wingert at left back, while Carlos Salcedo filled in for Beltan at right back.
“It had been a long time since I played,” Salcedo said in Spanish. “It felt good being out there with my teammates. We were able to pull off a good result.”
D.C. United entered the match coming off a 1-0 loss against the Houston Dynamo on Aug. 3.
Real Salt Lake next plays an international friendly on Tuesday against the 2012 Mexican league champions Xoloitzcuintlis de Tijuana. Its next league match is against the Western Conference leading Seattle Sounders on Aug. 16.
Salcedo said the team will bring the same intensity that brought it this far to the matches.