Herrera Lightens the 2-1 RSL Loss to Atlas By Using Long-Range Golizo

SANDY SANDY Aaron Herrera had one of the few bright spots of the 3-1 Real Salt Lake loss to Mexican club Atlas Thursday night at America First Field.

The defender from home scored one of the most impressive shots in RSL history when he was given the ball from midfield. He then launched the ball that was barely in the goal’s back before the goalkeeper was able to backpedal to stop the shot.

“I saw (the keeper) off his line for pretty much the whole first half,” Herrera stated about his daring move. “I observed him quite far out, and wanted to see if they could swing about … but the ball landed exactly as I had imagined it, and I took the opportunity. “”Players play and today Aaron did a great job,” head coach Pablo Mastroeni stated. “I was screaming from the sidelines: ‘Play forward. Don’t go back!’ And then he launched the ball. I think to myself, ‘Who’s he playing it to?’ But he played it forward to the most dangerous area, which is in front of the goal. So, fantastic awareness.”

The inter-league match played between MLS as well as Liga MX was played as part of the Leagues Cup Showcase ahead of the main tournament in.

RSL made a number of modifications to its lineup as six players absent for international duty. The backup goalie Tomas Gomez got the first start of his MLS career, while recent move to Danny Musovski got his first appearance for RSL.

Bode Hidalgo, 20 was close to scoring the goal that opened the scoring in the first half for RSL at the end of the 8thminute following an assist by Jasper Loffelsend, but the strike was thwarted by the goalkeeper.

The goal of the first half didn’t have to wait long because Herrera brought excitement to the crowd of late at night at the end of 17 minutes by launching his shot from the middle of midfield that flew over the goalkeeper and into the goal, making it 1-0.I must admit that I was initially in awe of the shot’s 70 yards after it left Herrera’s foot however, I realised what he was seeing that the keeper was off his line and was unable to catch up before the shot went into on the inside of the goal. It was a stunning spectacle to behold and not many players could even get past an open net in midfield or even 20 yards over the goal.

“Not sure I’ve actually seen a longer-range goal by a non-goalkeeper,” MLS writer Matthew Doyle tweeted.

Mastroeni claimed Herrera attempted the same shot in the past during training however the shot was out of bounds at the time.

Hidalgo almost provided an assist that would have make RSL ahead at 2-0 just 10 minutes later, but the Pablo Ruiz shot went just wide of the goal. Atlas hit a ball on the frames in the 34th minutes, however, Gomez did his best to complete the challenge and jumped to his left and grabbed the ball in order to prevent injury.

The script was changed at the end of the 36th minute as Justin Meram was shown a red card for a high-intensity challenge against one of the Atlas player. Gomez was able to block off the shot of the free kick that resulted to keep the 10 man RSL in the lead as the first half dwindled down.

Atlas had one last chance to score from an angle kick in the 41st minute. Edgar Zaldivar took advantage of an Gomez deflection to strike home the equalizer to put the two teams on a level footing 1-1 , at break.Axel Kei, who is 14 years old began the second period along with the regular centers backs Justen Glad as well as Marcelo Silva in the final RSL tried to gain control of the deadlock game.

The former Real Monarchs teammates Hidalgo and Kei almost scored an equalizer just two minutes into the second period However, Kei could not score the goal.

“I thought they were great. I thought every single one of them stepped in and did a fantastic job,” Mastroeni said about the youngsters. “Axel (Kei) was running the channels, again, down a man, (which is) not easy to do, and carried a heavy load defensively. I thought Bode (Hidalgo) was one of the highlights tonight. I thought he did some tremendous work on both sides of the ball.”

Gomez received five and fourth stop in quick intervals around the 50 minute mark as Atlas began to put pressure on the inexperienced home team.

Another RSL debut occurred in the 62nd minute , when the recent Monarchs player Gennaro Nigro took to the field for Ironman Andrew Brody, who has been in every game for RSL this season.

Second chances remained an Achilles’ heel of RSL throughout the first period, with an Atlas shot bouncing off the post to the left and then being quickly won through Lucas Rodriguez and sent into the goal to give them a 2-1 advantage in the 70th minute.The Claret and Cobalt have been off for a week and will return to MLS action for the final match of their regular schedule on October. 1. They play Los Angeles Galaxy. Los Angeles Galaxy.

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