Sunday, July 6, 2008

Daily Updates: Sunday July 6, 2008

Real Salt Lake primed for the start of something good -> Deseret News/Kurt Kragthorpe
"You just have to figure that one of those is going to hit somebody's butt and go in or something," Kreis said. "We just need a bounce to go our way, a little bit of luck."

MLS Sunday Review - USA Soccer Spot
  • Kenny Deuchar the much touted refugee from Gretna hasn’t been half the player for Real Salt Lake than Colorado’s Tam MacManus, a much less heralded SPL defector to MLS has been. The two are completely different types of players, and MacManus has fit his new club better.
  • Real Salt Lake has left more points “on the table” than any other team in MLS and perhaps more than every other team combined. Every RSL match seems to fit the same script. Real’s talented, technical midfield dominates the match, Nat Borchers anchors a solid backline which controls the match until late when Nick Rimando either has to play Superman or Salt Lake either misses an easy chance or a questionable officiating call goes against them. Salt Lake should be based on their quality on the pitch and their squad one of the top teams in MLS. When I watch RSL they almost always appear to be better than their opposition, yet they sit in a position where they may miss the MLS Cup playoffs yet again.
Five-a-side: What's hot around MLS -> MLS News
5. It is that Jason Kreis, right?: There is a real irony to watching a team coached by Jason Kreis struggle so in front of goal.

Real Salt Lake had a wonderful opportunity to collect an invaluable road win last week at Kansas City. But for some imprecise work near goal, Kreis' men could have assumed control against the Wizards at CommunityAmerica Ballpark. Instead, Curt Onalfo's team kept the visitors from scoring, and then managed an opportunistic goal at the end to collect all three points.

Thursday night on ESPN2, Kreis' team once again controlled matters, but never could beat Dynamo goalkeeper Pat Onstad, despite plenty of good surges into the offensive third.

The irony is this: Kreis made a huge imprint as a player by being tenacious and fiercely opportunistic around goal. For a guy not blessed with great size (like his current striker Kenny Deuchar) or terrific speed (like his current forward Robbie Findley), he still managed to strike at a rate that compares favorable to some of the league's all-time great goal scorers.

Kreis produced slightly more than a goal every third game, which is about where guys like Brian McBride, Jaime Moreno and Preki landed in strike-rate. And he will probably be the only player in MLS to record the very first goal for two clubs, as Kreis has (Dallas and RSL).

Still, somehow, his team leads the league in shots, but sometimes lacks polish on the final combination around goal or, simply, in putting the ball on frame.