Vancouver Whitecaps 2, Real Salt Lake 1 | 2020 MLS Match Recap
The Vancouver Whitecaps erased a 1-0 deficit with two goals in a four-minute span in the second half, riding an own goal and a 75th-minute game-winner from Lucas Cavallini to a 2-1 victory over Real Salt Lake at Providence Park on Saturday.
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Damir Kreilach put RSL in front in the first half with his seventh goal of the season, but the Whitecaps struck back with successive tallies, starting with an own goal off RSL's Douglas Martinez in the 71st minute before Cavallini's go-ahead finish, capturing three crucial points as they look to stay in contention for a Western Conference playoff spot.
RSL opened the scoring in the 37th minute when Maikel Chang sent a cross to the far post that found a wide-open Justin Meram, who headed it back across goal into the path of Kreilach. The Croatian easily slotted home the close-range finish to stake the visitors to the first-half lead.
Vancouver would manage to equalize in the 71st minute when substitute Michael Baldisimo whipped in a dangerous free kick that Martinez tried to head away, but wound up looping the ball into his own net.
Cavallini then found the go-ahead tally just four minutes after that, cashing home a rebound finish after Fredy Montero had his initial shot saved, giving the 'Caps the goal that would stand as the game-winner.
- 37' - RSL - Damir Kreilach | WATCH
- 71' - VAN - Douglas Martinez (OG) | WATCH
- 75' - VAN - Lucas Cavallini | WATCH
- THE BIG PICTURE: With the season in the home stretch, the Whitecaps really needed to take all three points in this one to realistically stay afloat in the Western Conference playoff race, so it's a job well done by Marc Dos Santos's group to fight back for the victory after conceding Kreilach's opener. It's been a difficult season for the Whitecaps on a lot of fronts, and this was far from a pretty victory, but the ends justify the means here. The result leaves both teams at 18 points from 17 matches, within shouting distance of one of the final postseason spots in the West.
- MOMENT OF THE MATCH: Cavallini's game-winner would be a fair choice, too, but it wouldn't have been the go-ahead tally without the fortuitous own goal just minutes earlier. Credit to Baldisimo for the delivery that led to the fateful deflection.
- MAN OF THE MATCH: Cavallini showed why Vancouver paid the big money to bring him in from Liga MX with his clinical rebound finish. The Canadian international gets the honors for this contest.