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Major League Soccer | Gameweek 28
Aug 30, 2021 at 3am UK
Empire Field
RS

Vancouver
4 - 1
Salt Lake

Silva (33' og.), White (53'), Gauld (64'), Jungwirth (69')
Brown (40')
FT(HT: 1-0)
Julio (90')
Powder (34'), Rusnak (53'), Silva (55')

Preview: Vancouver Whitecaps vs. Real Salt Lake - prediction, team news, lineups

:Headline: Preview: Vancouver Whitecaps vs. Real Salt Lake - prediction, team news, lineups:
Sports Mole previews Monday's Major League Soccer clash between Vancouver Whitecaps and Real Salt Lake, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.
Sports Mole

We will see two new managers make their debut on Sunday at BC Place Stadium when the Vancouver Whitecaps play host to Real Salt Lake.

Vancouver are currently riding an eight-game unbeaten run in league play, with their last defeat coming to Claret and Cobalt, who are looking for a third victory in four matches.


Match preview

Just when all hope looked lost, going winless in eight straight MLS games from May 12 until the middle of July, the Caps have picked themselves up with consecutive victories while stringing together a lot of points lately.

As a result, they are only three points back of the San Jose Earthquakes for that final playoff spot in the Western Conference with a game in hand.

In their first match of the season in Vancouver last week, the atmosphere was electric for Marc dos Santos and his team, who reversed a first-half deficit to win for a second successive time, scoring the winner with a minute to play against Los Angeles FC.

It was an emotional game for Whitecaps players and staff who had been forced to play outside of their home stadium before COVID measures were lifted.

A second-half substitution seemed to spark their comeback last weekend, and it looks like we saw the birth of a new star in the process.

Unfortunately for dos Santos that victory was not enough to save his job as the team announced on Friday afternoon that they were parting ways with the Canadian coach just a day after his team lost 4-3 to Pacific FC in the preliminary round of the Canadian Championship.

Their director of methodology Vanni Sartini has been appointed the acting head coach for the time being and he will likely hold that position for the remainder of the regular season.

After squandering several points early on in this campaign, things are evening out for Vancouver, who have held the fort at the back in their last two games despite facing some mounting pressure.

Salt Lake have been in a position to win many games this year, but just like their 2-1 defeat last Saturday to the Colorado Rapids, the results have not always gone their way.

Freddy Juarez saw his team get caught flat-footed on set pieces last weekend while missing some glorious opportunities to take control of the game in the first half.

In the end, they were unlucky to come away with nothing, as they had a first-half goal controversially called back apparently for offside, while they had a penalty decision late in the match reversed for the same reason.

In a twist of fate Juarez has left the club to pursue other opportunities with the rumour being that he will fill the assistant coaching vacancy with the Seattle Sounders.

That means their now former assistant Pablo Mastroeni will be in charge this weekend while the club says that they will begin the search for a full-time manager immediately.

Claret and Cobalt have shown outstanding balance and commitment in most of their games this year, but they tend to have one or two mental lapses, preventing them from having a bigger playoff cushion.

Currently sixth in the conference, a win on Sunday combined with a loss for Minnesota United would not only move them up to fifth in the Western Conference, but it could put a little distance between themselves and the other teams on the outside of the playoff picture at the moment, with Salt Lake currently just three points above that post-season line.

While they have had their fair share of scoring opportunities over the past few games, they give their opponents too many quality chances, particularly on the road, where they have allowed 18 shots on target over their last three games and conceded six goals.

Vancouver Whitecaps Major League Soccer form:
  • D
  • D
  • D
  • D
  • W
  • W

Vancouver Whitecaps form (all competitions):
  • D
  • D
  • D
  • W
  • W
  • L

Real Salt Lake Major League Soccer form:
  • D
  • L
  • L
  • W
  • W
  • L



Team News

Since signing a three-year deal at the end of July, Ryan Gauld has been a lightning rod for the Caps, with the Scottish midfielder notching the match-winner versus the Black-and-Gold last Saturday and scoring a brace in a narrow defeat to Pacific FC.

Brian White has a goal in each of his last two MLS games and Maxime Crepeau was named to the MLS Team of the Week after stopping six shots against LA.

The club signed defender Marcus Godinho until the end of the season with an option to keep him through 2023, while Lucas Cavallini is out with a left PCL sprain, Caio Alexandre has a left foot sprain, Erik Godoy is out with a left calf strain and Cristian Gutierrez is still nursing a left quad strain.

Albert Rusnak scored his fifth goal of this campaign in a losing effort to the Rapids, while goalkeeper Andrew Putna made his season debut, coming on at half time in relief of Zac MacMath.

Forward Bobby Wood was unavailable last weekend due to a hamstring strain, first-choice keeper David Ochoa and striker Jeizon Ramirez missed that match due to quad tightness, Andrew Brody has a toe injury and Zack Farnsworth is still recovering from an ankle problem.

Their top goalscorer Damir Kreilach will have to sit out on Sunday after collecting his fifth yellow card, while Aaron Herrera picked up his seventh assist of the season, which is good for fourth in the league and first among defenders.

Vancouver Whitecaps possible starting lineup:
Crepeau; Gaspar, Jungwirth, Veselinovic, Brown; Owusu, Teibert; Raposo, Gauld; Dajome, White

Real Salt Lake possible starting lineup:
Putna; Holt, Glad, Silva, Herrera; Luiz, Chang, Besler, Menendez; Rubin, Rusnak


We say: Vancouver Whitecaps 2-0 Real Salt Lake

The Caps are on a real high at the moment, and it looks like they have finally found a difference-maker in attack with the addition of Ryan Gauld.

Salt Lake always seem to have victory within reach, but without their catalyst in midfield Damir Kreilach, scoring chances could be hard to come by without his vision and creativity.



Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting under 3.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Under 3.5:data




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Premier League Table

Eastern Conference

TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Inter MiamiInter Miami16104238201834
2FC CincinnatiCincinnati1510322314933
3New York City FCNY City158251916326
4Columbus Crew146622113824
5New York Red BullsNY Red Bulls146532521423
6Charlotte FCCharlotte FC156451413122
7Toronto157172424022
8Philadelphia UnionPhiladelphia144642521418
9DC United154652125-418
10Nashville SCNashville143741720-316
11Orlando City144461522-716
12Atlanta UnitedAtlanta143471717013
13CF MontrealMontreal143471731-1413
14Chicago Fire152581427-1311
15New England RevolutionNew England132110926-177

Western Conference

TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Real Salt LakeSalt Lake1585230171329
2Minnesota UnitedMinnesota Utd137422417725
3Los Angeles GalaxyLA Galaxy156722722525
4Los Angeles FCLos Angeles147342519624
5Austin FCAustin156542018223
6Colorado RapidsColorado156452726122
7Vancouver WhitecapsVancouver145451917219
8Houston DynamoHouston145361315-218
9Seattle SoundersSeattle154561818017
10St Louis City143742022-216
11Portland TimbersPortland153572730-314
12Dallas133461620-413
13Sporting Kansas CityKansas142662225-312
14San Jose EarthquakesEarthquakes1532102334-1111
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