Real Salt Lake have won the MLS Cup and been runners-up too, but in recent times have posted their worst ever finish in the Western Conference and failed to make the playoffs in 2015 for the first time in seven seasons. So are this Jekyll and Hyde team destined for glory or failure in 2016? Real Salt Lake’s brief history is fascinating. ‘The Royals’, as they are known (Real means Royal in Spanish), aspire to the greats of Real Madrid, and came into being in 2004, joining the MLS as the 12th franchise for the start of the 2005 campaign.
As is fairly common, they didn’t get off to the best start, but did win their first ever home game 1-0 against perennial rivals Colorado Rapids. The season was never going to be a successful one, however, when RSL failed to score for a what wat then a record 557 minutes!
2006 started no better, as Real were winless across the first half-dozen games. Jeff Cunningham, a transfer from Colorado Rapids, improved the fans hopes, and eventually helped them to ten wins from 32 games, but RSL were once again not a postseason threat. Things improved with a new stadium in 2008, when they moved to the Rio Tinto Stadium, and after finishing the season with new additions Javier Morales, Kyle Beckerman and Robbie Findley, posted a 10-10-10 record that saw them compete in their first MLS playoffs, beating Chivas USA but eventually losing out to the New York Red Bulls in the Western Conference finals.
Real Salt Lake’s greatest-ever season was the very next one, with the MLS Cup coming to Salt Lake in 2009. Of their 16 home games, only one loss was posted, with nine wins setting them on their way to a playoffs appearance courtesy of a vital win on the final day of the regular season against Colorado Rapids.
RSL were in the playoffs and with some serious momentum. They used that to get all the way to the MLS Cup Final for the first time, and were up against overwhelming favorites in terms of history and experience, L.A. Galaxy. Not overawed, RSL tied 1-1 after extra time, and won the cup 5-4 on penalties, with goalkeeper Nick Rimando putting in a Man of the Match performance. RSL were champions!
Salt Lake hasn’t won the MLS Cup since their epic 2009 triumph. 2010 started well, with a record home unbeaten streak crowned by that 25th game victory against FC Dallas, but the same side would eliminate RSL in the first knockout round. Salt Lake were down, but not out. They made it back to the Western Conference final in 2011, when L.A. Galaxy got their revenge.
Coming 2nd in the Western Conference in both 2012 and 2013 gave RSL chances to win their second MLS Cup, but they lost to Sporting Kansas City in the final, as well as being defeated in the Open Cup final too, to D.C. United. Two cup defeats lateer, and the club decided to hire new manager Jeff Cassar. Under Cassar, they finished third in 2014, but were routed 5-0 by L.A. Galaxy in the conference final. Last season went even worse, with RSL finishing 9th, their worst ever regular season finish.
2016 needs to be an improvement, but if Real can return to the playoffs, then you never know what they can do – just take a look at those 2009 statistics if you don’t believe us!
Real Salt Lake Betting Lines Today
Who do Real Salt Lake take on next and what are they on the moneyline? Have a look below for the team’s next game and best odds. It’s the first step in your successful wagering campaign.
Real Salt Lake Scores & Schedule
What is the latest result for Real Salt Lake? Traditionally stronger at Rio Tinto Stadium, they’ll have to improve both their home and away form to have a chance of lifting the MLS Cup.
Portland Timbers Standings Right Now
From 9th in 2015, Real Salt Lake will be looking to finish this season in the playoffs and make the postseason. Take a look at the full standings and follow Real’s progress!
How To Make Money on Real Salt Lake Betting
With a proud record of home success, it’s perhaps predictable to tip Real Salt Lake for more home wins that positive away results, but this should factor in opponents for maximum value.
Back RSL to lose against lower-ranked teams when they’re on the road, sure, but don’t be afraid to back them at home against strong opposition.
Jordan Allen is a star for RSL these days, and his goals and assists can fire them to the playoffs. They were a season-starting +1600 to win the MLS Cup outright, which looks unkind to a team who can be a surprise package should they reach the knockout games.
Postseason will hold no fear for RSL, and while their problems on the road shouldn’t encourage you to back them to win the Western Conference outright despite their strong start to the first ten games of the 2016 season.
An outright MLS Cup win is not beyond them and their odds in comparison to other teams with the equal threat looks good value to us.
Monitor their superstars’ fitness of course, but we are tentatively optimistic about RSL’s hopes of bouncing back in the next twelve months after a disastrous 2015.