Tuesday, June 2, 2009

RSL Youth Manage Draw Against Partizan Belgrade

Word has come through RSL Communications about this result in yesterday’s match. This is a fantastic result for the club. This is impressive for several reasons:

  • Partizan was the favorite in this game and probably the group.
  • RSL practiced together for the first time on Thursday, the Belgrade side has been playing together full-time.
  • DC United’s suffered a 7-goal loss (8-1) to this same Partizan Belgrade club last year.

This is a good sign. Hopefully they can keep it going and move past the group stage.



MF Nick Marshall Tallies 73rd Minute Equalizer in RSL’s First Match of the 2009 Mundial de Clubes Sub-18 Comunidad de Madrid

ALCORCON, Spain (Monday, June 1, 2009)Real Salt Lake’s Under-18 squad picked up a thrilling 1-1 draw vs. European youth powerhouse Partizan Belgrade at Estadio Municipal Santo Domingo in the Madrid suburb of Alcorcon. After giving up an early strike to the highly touted Partizan side, MF Nick Marshall found the equalizer the 73rd minute.

After losing in last year’s championship game Partizan Belgrade came into the match significant favorites. They started off in impressive form, controlling the early tempo and capping things with a 25-yard strike in the 32nd minute.

RSL would not back down however. Immediately countering and pushing the pace, the Salt Lake side began to find their rhythm.

As the second half began, it was apparent RSL would not be satisfied with defeat. Working to possess the ball and attack with their team speed, Real began to find cracks in the Partizan backline.

Striker James Rogers nearly pulled his team level just ten minutes after the break. Sneaking between a pair of Belgrade defenders, the 2008 SUM Cup MVP nodded a Trevor Henderson cross on frame only to see the Partizan keeper save the shot off his line.

The 72nd minute saw another chance go begging as FW Danny Mwanga corralled a ball just left of the penalty spot. Turning with a defender draped on his back the reigning PAC-10 Freshman of the Year fired a right-footed blast at the far post. The Belgrade netminder was up to the task once again though, this time parrying the shot just wide of his post.

Just when it was looking like it may not be their day, RSL struck back. DSC_0772Taking the resultant corner, MF Donny Toia fired a driven, left-footed ball at the near post where fellow MF Nick Marshall rose above the pack and headed the ball just inside the near post. With the score level 1-1, the stage was set for a fast and furious final 20 minutes.

Clearly taken aback by the determined Salt Lake side, Partizan Belgrade appeared to be on their heels following the goal. Looking to capitalize and pick up a late winner, RSL controlled possession and continued to push forward in attack.

The Partizan defense held firm though, and even found a pair of dangerous chances with their potent counter-attack. Much like his Serbian counterpart, however, RSL GK Mike D’Arrigo met the challenge and made a pair of spectacular saves to secure the point for his team.

After one round of play, Real Salt Lake stands tied atop Group D with one point and is in excellent position to accomplish something no MLS team has in the four years of this tournament – advance out of group play and into the elimination rounds.

The team will next see action against Spanish First Division side Espanyol Wednesday afternoon at 6:00 p.m. local time (10:00 a.m. MT.)

RSL Lineup: GK - Mike D’Arrigo; DF - Taylor Bowlin, Jon Pearman, Taylor Peay, Kodiac Gamble; MF - Karson Payton (Donny Toia 45′), Mike Hodgen (Colin Anderson 80′), Adrian Saldana, Trevor Henderson (Nick Marshall 62′); FW - James Rogers (TJ East 58′), Danny Mwanga

Substitutes Not Used: Jason Dodson, Carlos Cruz, Josh Kealamakia, Tommy Martin, Joey Layton

Scoring Summary:

Partizan Belgrade - 32

Real Salt Lake - Marshall 1 (Toia 1) 73

2009 Mundial de Clubes Sub-18 Comunidad de Madrid – Schedule

6/1/09 – Real Salt Lake vs. Partizan Belgrade - 1:1

6/3/09 – Real Salt Lake vs. Espanyol (SPA) – 10:00 a.m. MT

6/5/09 – Real Salt Lake vs. Rayo Vallecano (SPA) – 10:00 a.m. MT