Real Salt coach Mike Petke had originally planned to show all 90 minutes of Saturday’s 5-1 loss to LAFC in Monday’s film session, but after re-watching the game several times, he decided that would be “counter-productive.”
Instead, they condensed it down to about 45 minutes. Then Petke asked his players what they had noticed.
“About the seventh guy said, ‘Some of those clips we looked actually pretty good,’” Petke said. “And if anybody goes back and watches the game, there were some very good moments as well. The score line obviously negates that.”
Real Salt Lake opted to start training early this week, using a Monday training session to move on from the embarrassing home-opening loss. The team usually begins training on Tuesday after a Saturday match.
“We had a very lengthy and very direct and very good meeting this morning,” Petke said. “So morale right now, it’s picking up starting on a Monday. So our morale and energy and everything is going to be good for this weekend, I can tell you that. So gone, but not forgotten.”
RED BULLS AT RSL
When • Saturday, 7 p.m.
TV • KMYU
Buried between the onslaught of LAFC counter-attacking goals and barely missed opportunities, there was Joao Plata’s second-chance volley for a goal in the 20th minute; RSL’s midfield-third defense to win back possession in the 37th minute; the way the attack built from the back to get Albert Rusnák a shot in the 62nd minute.
RSL will cling to those positives as it tries to rebound from conceding the most goals at home in club history.
After hours upon hours of studying the tapes, Petke said he felt the breakdowns that led to goals were “100 percent fixable.”
“A lot of it was reactions in transition,” he said, “whereas you look at our game against Dallas … our commitment to transition defense was incredible, it was great, and that’s why we got a result on the road.”
With only one off day between Saturday’s match and Monday’s practice, RSL’s starters had a light first training session. RSL plans to take Wednesday off to maintain a four-practice schedule this week.
“I think it was good to get out on the field,” center back Justen Glad said Monday, “and kind of flush that game out of the system, get some touches again and kind of focus on next week as soon as possible.”
Real Salt Lake brought in Adam Henley and Aaron Herrera during the offseason to provide options at right back with Tony Beltran out with a knee injury. Shawn Barry and Taylor Peay were signed to add depth to center back.
By the end of Saturday’s match, all four were out with injuries, in addition to center back Marcelo Silva.
“We’ve had a couple [injuries to the back line], but that’s part of the game, you know?” Glad said. “You’ve just got to adapt, and however many guys we’ve got on our roster—we’ve got 20-something solid guys, who anyone can step in and fill in, and that shouldn’t be an excuse we lean on.”
RSL will likely get Henley (hamstring) back this weekend. While he wasn’t in the 18 Saturday, he was listed as questionable leading into the match.
But as soon as Henley’s return began to seem imminent, Barry, who started at right Saturday, caught the injury bug. He left the match in the 57th minute, limping to the sideline after a trainer examined his right leg. Winger Brooks Lennon replaced Barry.
“Brooks came on, gave us a lot of energy,” Petke said. “He had some key defensive plays, and he got forward. … He was a spark, but it was a little late. Guys were already tired.”
Petke declined to comment on Barry’s injury Monday.