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Preview: Toronto FC looking for rare win in Salt Lake City

Six points from their last two matches will have the Reds feeling confident.

A balance of experience and youth has seen Toronto FC pick up wins in their last two matches. “(Sean Pollock/Waking The Red)”

TORONTO, Ont. - After two morale-boosting wins in front of the TFC faithful, the Reds will head back on the road and try to add to their positive results of late in Salt Lake City.

Kick-off is scheduled for 8 PM EST and can be watched, as always, on TSN.

Building on last week, the Reds will be looking for their third win in a row and their first road win under Bob Bradley, this season.

Last week, Bradley called upon Kosi Thompson, handing the youngster his first start, in which he went the distance. After a shaky first 10 minutes, Thompson settled into the match and was able to make some key plays to link up with the attack. In addition, Lukas MacNaughton, one of the Reds’ CPL imports from this offseason, has settled into the team in the last couple weeks.

It can always be a risk to play youngsters in any squad, but with the more experienced figures in the Reds lineup, this gamble should pay dividends in the long run. Coupled with the youngsters, the seasoned players have certainly played their part in the Reds’ last two wins, with Jesús Jiménez (leads the team with three goals), Alejandro Pozuelo, and Jonathan Osorio all scoring, while Carlos Salcedo, Shane O’Neill, and Michael Bradley each got the job done on the other side of the ball. Keeping this balance will be key for the Reds as they look to continue their win streak this weekend.

Toronto will be without Jakhele Marshall-Rutty for the game and for the foreseeable future, but Kading Chung is set for a return after missing last weekend’s victory against NYCFC.

Toronto FC’s adversary this weekend, Real Salt Lake, has started their season strongly, collecting 11 points through their first six matches while picking up at least one point in five of their first six.

Currently sitting third in the Western Conference, RSL has been stingy defensively this season, conceding five times in six games. While they’re not blowing away teams on the offensive side of the ball either, with seven goals through six games, RSL is making every game tough on the opposition, particularly at home, where they’re are unbeaten in their two home games so far this season.

RSL will be without the services of Zack Farnsworth (right ankle), Justen Glad (hamstring), Bret Halsey (ankle), Erik Holt (left foot), Johan Kappelhof (left calf), Jonathan Menendez (adductor); while Nick Besler (nose), Aaron Herrera (left calf), Jasper Löffelsend (hamstring), David Ochoa (right quad), Bobby Wood (hamstring) are questionable for the home side.

This will be the first encounter between RSL and the Reds since 2019, where RSL collected all three points in a 3-0 victory.

The Reds have had a tough time picking up any points on their visits to Salt Lake as they’ve haven’t won there since July 2007, where goals from Jeff Cunningham and Collin Samuel helped Toronto to a 2-1 win.

Safe to say, the Reds are long overdue for a win in Salt Lake.

Match Details:

Opponent: Real Salt Lake
Stadium: Rio Tinto Stadium, Sandy, UT
Kick-off: 8 PM EST
Watch: TSN