Really bad first half dooms Metro in Salt Lake
September 4, 2010
Coming off two terrific victories, Metro was due for a letdown. And a letdown they got, as an early goal and a terrible first half led to them losing to Salt Lake, 1:0.
International absences led to Greg Sutton starting for Bouna Coundoul, Danleigh Borman for Roy Miller, Seth Stammler for Rafa Marquez, and Mac Kandji for Dane Richards.
RSL struck just four minutes into the match. Off a throw-in, a through ball found Fabian Espindola amidst the asleep Metro defense. The Salt Lake attacker fought off Tim Ream, and with Sutton seemingly forgetting that he is not sitting on the bench, Espindola had an easy finish. Sutton did redeem himself later in the half, stopping Robbie Findley's point-blank header.
Metro was completely outplayed for the entire first period, with their lone chance coming off a corner kick, but Juan Pablo Angel's header for cleared off the line. One could count on one hand the number of touches Thierry Henry had, and still have a few fingers left over.
Whatever "Clever" Hans Backe said at halftime worked, as Metro came out a different team. They controlled the game for long stretches, something which seemed unthinkable before the break. Off another corner kick, Angel powered his head to the ball, but was denied by Nick Rimando. The ensuing follow-up was cleared off the line once again.
That was Metro's best chance. They continued to hold the ball for most of the match, but just couldn't break through. Sutton decided to stay awake, denying Findley once again, this time on a breakaway, but that sadly proved to be irrelevant to the game's result.
Lineup: Sutton, Borman, Ream, Mendes, Albright, Stammler, Tchani, Lindpere, Kandji, Henry, Angel. Subs: Ubiparipovic, Ibrahim.