Previous
San Jose Earthquakes
Los Angeles Galaxy
1
1
FT
Game Details
Manchester United
Queens Park Rangers
4
0
FT
Game Details
Valencia
Espanyol
3
1
FT
Game Details
Sevilla FC
Getafe
2
0
FT
Game Details
Internazionale
Sassuolo
7
0
FT
Game Details
Parma
AC Milan
4
5
FT
Game Details
Hannover 96
Hamburg SV
2
0
FT
Game Details
Evian Thonon Gaillard
Marseille
1
3
FT
Game Details
Manchester United
Queens Park Rangers
4
0
FT
Game Details
Rayo Vallecano
Elche
2
3
FT
Game Details
Valencia
Espanyol
3
1
FT
Game Details
Sevilla FC
Getafe
2
0
FT
Game Details
Granada
Villarreal
0
0
FT
Game Details
Eintracht Frankfurt
FC Augsburg
0
1
FT
Game Details
Hannover 96
Hamburg SV
2
0
FT
Game Details
Sampdoria
Torino
2
0
FT
Game Details
Cagliari
Atalanta
1
2
FT
Game Details
Fiorentina
Genoa
0
0
FT
Game Details
Internazionale
Sassuolo
7
0
FT
Game Details
Lazio
Cesena
3
0
FT
Game Details
Napoli
Chievo Verona
0
1
FT
Game Details
Parma
AC Milan
4
5
FT
Game Details
Lille
Nantes
2
0
FT
Game Details
Guingamp
Bordeaux
2
1
FT
Game Details
Evian Thonon Gaillard
Marseille
1
3
FT
Game Details
Nottingham Forest
Derby County
1
1
FT
Game Details
Sporting Gijon
Girona
1
1
FT
Game Details
Lugo
Leganes
0
0
FT
Game Details
Real Zaragoza
CD Sabadell
1
1
FT
Game Details
Real Betis
Albacete
0
1
FT
Game Details
AD Alcorcon
Real Valladolid
0
1
FT
Game Details
Tenerife
Mirandes
1
0
FT
Game Details
Vicenza
Ternana
0
1
FT
Game Details
Heidenheimer SB
FC Union Berlin
3
1
FT
Game Details
St Pauli
TSV 1860 Munich
1
2
FT
Game Details
SV Sandhausen
SpVgg Greuther Furth
1
0
FT
Game Details
FC Utrecht
ADO Den Haag
0
0
FT
Game Details
Cambuur Leeuwarden
FC Groningen
3
0
FT
Game Details
Vitesse Arnhem
Excelsior
3
1
FT
Game Details
Dordrecht '90
NAC Breda
0
1
FT
Game Details
FC Volendam
FC Den Bosch
2
2
FT
Game Details
Boavista
Academica de Coimbra
1
0
FT
Game Details
Maritimo
FC Penafiel
2
0
FT
Game Details
Guimaraes
FC Porto
1
1
FT
Game Details
Paços de Ferreira
Gil Vicente
1
1
FT
Game Details
Estoril
CD Nacional de Madeira
2
1
FT
Game Details
Spartak Moscow
FK Torpedo Moscow
3
1
FT
Game Details
Krasnodar
FC Ufa
0
2
FT
Game Details
Kasimpasa
Mersin Idmanyurdu
2
2
FT
Game Details
Gaziantepspor
Erciyesspor
2
2
FT
Game Details
Trabzonspor
Fenerbahce
0
0
FT
Game Details
Panionios
Asteras Tripoli
2
1
FT
Game Details
Atromitos
Panetolikos
0
0
FT
Game Details
Giannina
FC Xanthi
2
2
FT
Game Details
Levadiakos
Panthrakikos
1
1
FT
Game Details
Kalloni AEL
Panathinaikos
1
0
FT
Game Details
Racing Genk
Club Brugge
1
1
FT
Game Details
KAA Gent
Mouscron-Peruwelz
1
0
FT
Game Details
KV Kortrijk
KSC Lokeren
2
3
FT
Game Details
Wolfsberger AC
SV Salzburg
1
0
FT
Game Details
Brøndby
Randers FC
0
2
FT
Game Details
Esbjerg
FC Vestsjaelland
3
0
FT
Game Details
Gefle IF
Falkenbergs FF
3
1
FT
Game Details
Halmstad
Mjallby
1
2
FT
Game Details
Djurgarden
Atvidabergs FF
0
1
FT
Game Details
Elfsborg
IFK
0
0
FT
Game Details
Sandnes Ulf
Sarpsborg FK
0
2
FT
Game Details
IK Start
Stabaek
2
3
FT
Game Details
Sogndal
Aalesund
1
1
FT
Game Details
Valerenga
Haugesund
4
1
FT
Game Details
Molde
Lillestrom
3
2
FT
Game Details
FC Vaduz
St Gallen
2
2
FT
Game Details
Young Boys
Lucerne
3
2
FT
Game Details
FC Zürich
FC Sion Sitten
4
1
FT
Game Details
San Jose Earthquakes
Los Angeles Galaxy
1
1
FT
Game Details
UNAM
U.A.N.L
2
2
FT
Game Details
Rhyl
Bangor City
3
2
FT
Game Details
Lanús
Banfield
1
0
FT
Game Details
Belgrano de Córdoba
Vélez Sarsfield
1
0
FT
Game Details
Boca Juniors
Racing Club
1
0
Susp
Game Details
Arsenal de Sarandí
River Plate
Postp
Game Details
Atlético MG
Gremio
0
0
FT
Game Details
Atletico Paranaense
EC Vitória
2
0
FT
Game Details
Bahia
Figueirense FC
3
0
FT
Game Details
Criciúma
Goiás EC
1
0
FT
Game Details
Flamengo
Corinthians
1
0
FT
Game Details
Internacional
Botafogo
2
0
FT
Game Details
São Paulo
Cruzeiro
2
0
FT
Game Details
Palestino
Colo Colo
1
3
FT
Game Details
Cobreloa
Audax Italiano
0
1
FT
Game Details
Ñublense
Barnechea
0
1
FT
Game Details
Antofagasta
Huachipato
2
2
FT
Game Details
Universidad de Chile
Universidad de Concepción
1
0
FT
Game Details
Cerro
Defensor Sporting
0
3
FT
Game Details
Fénix
El Tanque Sisley
1
0
FT
Game Details
Juventud
Tacuarembó FC
4
2
FT
Game Details
Nacional
Danubio F.C.
3
0
FT
Game Details
Boyacá Chicó FC
Patriotas F.C.
1
1
FT
Game Details
Once Caldas
Alianza Petrolera
3
0
FT
Game Details
Atlético Huila
Deportes Tolima
0
0
FT
Game Details
Atlético Junior
Uniautonoma
3
1
FT
Game Details
Melgar
Sporting Cristal
1
0
FT
Game Details
Real Garcilaso
Alianza Lima
0
0
FT
Game Details
Universitario de Deportes
Cienciano del Cusco
2
0
FT
Game Details
Sportivo Luqueño
Sol de América
2
0
FT
Game Details
Nacional
General Díaz
2
0
FT
Game Details
LDU Quito
Club Deportivo Cuenca
1
1
FT
Game Details
Barcelona
Emelec
1
0
FT
Game Details
Tucanes
Portuguesa
2
0
FT
Game Details
Carabobo
Atlético Venezuela
1
1
FT
Game Details
Zulia
Deportivo Táchira
1
2
FT
Game Details
Deportivo La Guaira
Dep. Metropolitano
3
0
FT
Game Details
Estudiantes de Mérida
Deportivo Petare
1
1
FT
Game Details
Deportivo Anzoategui
Llaneros
5
0
FT
Game Details
Deportivo Lara
Trujillanos
0
0
FT
Game Details
Zamora
Mineros
1
1
FT
Game Details
Nacional Potosí
Universitario de Sucre
3
0
FT
Game Details
San José
Club Petrolero de Yacuiba
4
1
FT
Game Details
Universitario de Pando
Real Potosí
0
0
FT
Game Details
Blooming
Sport Boys Warnes
2
2
FT
Game Details
Bloem Celtic
Mamelodi Sundowns
0
1
FT
Game Details
Moroka Swallows
Chippa United
0
2
FT
Game Details
Club Sport Uruguay
Belen
1
0
FT
Game Details
Pumas Generalena
Cartagines
0
1
FT
Game Details
Santos
Perez Zeledon
2
2
FT
Game Details
CD Motagua
Marathon
0
1
FT
Game Details
Parrillas One
Honduras Progreso
1
3
FT
Game Details
Next

Semifinal matchups

#UltimateUCL 2 days ago
Read

The 22 Champions League winners

#UltimateUCL 7 days ago
Read
Jul 13, 2008

Real Salt Lake soaring under Kreis

Almost midway into the season and surprisingly the team everyone least expected to make this early run is Real Salt Lake. If no one is asking questions how this modest Utah-based club that finished with only six wins last season is playing this well, it might be because they have flown pretty much under the radar until now. The team remains unbeaten at home and after a 2-0 win Saturday against Columbus, lead the Western Conference for the first time in team history.

Coming into this season most skeptics expected another bad year, but the one change made early last year is reaping early dividends in wins for their fans in 2008. It all started when, with only four games into the 2007 season, management made a massive change in coaching philosophy. The team did not install an already established name in MLS coaching ranks, instead, it chose a first-time coach and in former player Jason Kreis.

He was given the mantle to change the attitude of the team and has turned that around in a short period. "I think they see that I'm passionate about what I do," Kreis said of his current group of players who he admits most have played with or against him at some point. "They know to expect hard work every day in training and I expect the sessions to be extremely competitive as the game on the weekend."

When Kreis took over the team, there was a lack of focus and it was a club struggling for identity. In the offseason, he chose to reform the club to resemble his team-oriented style. He has also instilled a philosophy of winning, a mentality of starting fresh and it has echoed throughout the new group.

"When I first came out here, at the halfway point of last season, Jason told us we are 0-0-0 in the second half of the season," said team captain Kyle Beckerman, "Winning is a habit and so is losing."

The majority of players this season are also different from when Kreis took over. With a new group, and a positive mentality, it is quite easy to create a more cohesive and competitive unit as well as provide a different direction.

Entering the season, the biggest hole that needed to be filled was the loss of Eddie Pope, the long-time all-star who retired after last season. Even with Pope, RSL allowed 48 goals last season, second-most in the league.

"Coming into preseason, I knew the history of the team. When I played in Colorado, we used to come into Rice-Eccles Stadium and beat up on these guys," said Nat Borchers, who along with fellow new addition Jamison Olave, has helped solidify the back line.

"Nat Borchers is one of our stellar backs and I played with him in Colorado," said Beckerman, who also joined RSL last season. Olave is a special specimen in the back and a rock that is hard to get by. Most recently when the team played Houston Dynamo at home, he was tasked with curtailing Dynamo's Brian Ching. He might have picked up a yellow card, but he earned the respect of both the player and the game commentators.

Up front, the team has been able to combine the pace of Robbie Findley and the size of Kenny Deuchar. Though the pair have yet to produce the flow of goals expected, both Kreis and Beckerman agree Deuchar especially will only get better as the Scot settles into the league. "It's been an adjusting period for him, after playing in Scotland and a little bit in England. I think in America, the defense is a lot different than he is used to," said Beckerman.

Amidst all the changes and adjustments, physical and psychological, the biggest acquisition has undoubtedly been Argentine Javier Morales. The 28-year-old playmaker, formerly with Newell's Old Boys and Lanus, made an impact from the onset, registering an assist just 40 seconds into his debut against Kansas City. This season, he's tied for second in the league with seven. "We have a lot of guys who are dangerous. We have very special players on the team, but none like Javier Morales," said Borchers.

Their biggest weakness for RSL remains its poor travel form. With only three points from seven away games, so far, it's obvious the team needs to improve on the road.

"We've been right in there, some of the games we lost," said Beckerman. "I think it is something that we are constantly learning from and get better as a team."

Though everyone attributes most of the current success to Kreis, the coach quickly deflects the praise. "I would disagree; I think it is the players. A coach organizes the team, training sessions. It's the players that get the success and the players are responsible for the results."

The current group at RSL, devoid of any oversized egos, has adopted a blue-collar work ethic and approach. "There are no guys here who think they are here on vacation, we all want to work hard. We don't have any prima donnas either," said Borchers.

Kreis is not one to let the early success get into the heads of his team, fans or management. His goal is for the team to understand they can improve, display better soccer not only in the first half of the season, but also reaching the playoffs. "I think we've had a good first half of the season, but certainly not great and not 100 percent successful," said Kreis. "We can do more as a team that will make us better for the second half of the season."

Sulaiman Folarin is a columnist for ESPNsoccernet and contributing writer for ESPN The Magazine. He can be contacted at sulaiman4real@yahoo.com.

Comments

Use a Facebook account to add a comment, subject to Facebook's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your Facebook name, photo & other personal information you make public on Facebook will appear with your comment, and may be used on ESPN's media platforms. Learn more.