Real starts Portugal trip with two solid results

Real Salt Lake (5-1-2 preseason) started its European leg of its training camp this week in grand fashion, blanking Beira Mar of the Portuguese Second Division, 4-0.

“Overall, the game went very well and several of our young players saw 90 minutes of action,” RSL head coach John Ellinger said. “Beira Mar Algarve is a very talented team with a lot of youth, and our guys played extremely well as a cohesive unit, allowing us to essentially dominate the game.”

RSL forward Jamie Watson, RSL’s No. 13 pick in their first MLS SuperDraft, led off the scoring with a goal, which came from midfielder Evan Whitfield on a through-ball into the 18-yard box. Watson fired the ball toward the near post, and it went in the net. Just three minutes after the first goal, midfielder Kevin Novak collected a cross and scored his first goal of the preseason. Novak is a trialist with RSL, having been invited to Real Salt Lake’s tryout camp in Provo two months ago.

Well into the second half, RSL again capitalized on another through-ball into Beira Mar’s 18-yard box, and Watson collected his second goal of the match. Later, midfielder “Laser” Luke Kreamalmeyer continued his fine form, notching the last goal of the match in the 70th minute on a chip just over the hands of the Beira Mar goalkeeper.

RSL followed that match the next day with one against a tougher opponent, Portimonense. The Portuguese Second Division side played Real Salt Lake end-to-end, and the match ended in a 1-1 tie. RSL forward Jason Kreis tallied another goal on the preseason campaign, scoring RSL’s only goal on a low-lining free kick from about 30 yards.

Portimonense capitalized just three minutes after Kreis’ tally. Next Tuesday RSL will face Recreativa Huelva, a Spanish Second Divison team currently ranked second in the table.

Not joining the team in Portugal are defenders Brian Dunseth, and Trinidadian international Marlon Rojas, RSL’s newest acquisition. Rojas said he is excited about joining Real Salt Lake and MLS. “This is definitely great news for me as I have been looking forward to joining MLS since playing collegiate soccer in the United States,” Rojas said.

“I expect to make a good impression once I join up with the team in Portugal. This is a great opportunity to establish myself in MLS.” Both Dunseth and Rojas will remain in Salt Lake, however, with Dunseth receiving treatment for an injured knee and Rojas house-hunting.

The European leg of training camp will end March 9. The final leg of camp will start on March 13, in Redlands, Calif.

Scrimmages are scheduled against MLS teams on March 19 versus Colorado in Houston, Texas, and on March 25 in Tulsa, Okla., against Kansas City.

Also Thursday, Real Salt Lake announced the RSL adidas jerseys are to be unveiled March 12 at 6 p.m. in the Town Lift plaza in Park City.

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