RSL plays to 0-0 tie in rain-soaked opener

Real Salt Lake (0-0-1) opened its first-ever MLS regular season Saturday, braving gusts at more than 45 mph, a steady rain and 15 missed scoring chances for a scoreless draw versus the New York/New Jersey MetroStars in East Rutherford, N.J.

RSL’s best scoring chances came in the opening minutes of the second half, but Metros goalkeeper Zach Wells thwarted the RSL onslaught and preserved the clean sheet.

With the wind at their backs in the second half, Real Salt Lake outshot the Metros 14-5 and 15-11 for the match.

The Metros’ best opportunities of the match came in the 18th minute when Wells blasted a goal kick 70 yards, cutting through the wind and over the RSL defense to the feet of forward Sergio Galvan Rey, who found himself one-on-one with Real Salt Lake keeper D.J. Countess. Countess, later announced the Man of the Match, challenged Rey at the top of the 18-yard box and thwarted Rey’s shot.

In the 60th minute, Metros midfielder Eddie Gaven crossed a ball into the penalty box, which midfielder John Wolyniec headed toward the near post. Countess parried the ball to his left, saving the clean sheet and single point.

Only about 1,000 fans actually attended the match in spite of an announced attendance of more than 12,000.

RSL will next play Saturday at the Los Angeles Galaxy at 8 p.m, and will have its home opener in Rice-Eccles Stadium versus Colorado April 16 at 1 p.m.

Tickets may be purchased at the Real Salt Lake Web site or at http://www.utahtickets.com.

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