Real Salt Lake Earns a Point but Loses a Striker in Chicago

Matt JonesAnalyst IJune 23, 2011

Real Salt Lake and the Chicago Fire played to a 0-0 draw
Real Salt Lake and the Chicago Fire played to a 0-0 drawDavid Banks/Getty Images

Real Salt Lake and the Chicago Fire played to a 0-0 draw Wednesday in a mid-week Major League Soccer matchup.

While they will take the point on the road, for Real Salt Lake, the story of this match was not the final score but a injury that took forward Fabian Espindola out of the game.

Early in the match, Espindola went down and was not able to continue. This added to the problems for head coach Jason Kreis, who was already short on strikers.

Jean Alexandre, who had filled in while usual forwards Arturo Alvarez and Alvaro Saborio were away from the team playing in the Gold Cup, was suspended for this match due to a reckless tackle last Saturday against D.C. United.

Following the injury, young rookie Luis Gil entered the match and played well up top. He was matched with fellow rookie Artur Aghasyan, who started at forward.

Gil continued playing well and had a couple of good scoring opportunities.

For Chicago, the man of the match was goalkeeper Sean Johnson who turned back the best scoring chance of the night on a crossed ball to the feet of Real Salt Lake mid-fielder Collen Warner.

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Surprised by the pass that made it through the defense in the box, Warner turned to strike the ball and sent a high shot on frame. Johnson left his feet and stretched out to push the ball out of bounds.

The two teams played back and forth, and each had a good chance late in the second half, but each defense held and no goals were scored.

For Real Salt Lake, this was the third draw in a row. They next play on Saturday against Toronto FC at home in Utah.


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