This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2016, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.
Sandy • When he came off the field in the 70th minute last Sunday night in Philadelphia, Real Salt Lake attacker Burrito Martinez certainly looked displeased.
RSL coach Jeff Cassar took notice and he had to respect it.
"I think all of our players are winners. They want to be on the field and I completely understand that and respect that. I believe that was maybe the second time all year that [he] has come off the field. I respect that. I don't want anyone that's excited about coming off the field."
But with RSL dealing with injuries and an East Coast road trip, staying fresh during this grueling stretch of three games in seven days has been a juggling act.
"It's something you have to prepare yourself for in the offseason," midfielder Kyle Beckerman said. "Our coaches do a good job of really maintaining our fitness level and making sure we're recovering."
Despite logging shifts of 86 and 90 minutes in the first two games of the week, Beckerman was looking forward to returning to the field Saturday for a chance to shake off Wednesday's 1-0 defeat in Toronto.
"These are fun, especially after we lost our last game," the captain said. "We've got a game to respond right away and that's always good."
That kind of outlook is exactly why Martinez's teammates understand his frustrations.
"Most guys when they're coming out of the game are frustrated, and I don't think that's a bad thing," defender Chris Wingert said. "I think that's a good thing that they're eager to be on the field."
OK in OKC?
Despite having been loaned to North American Soccer League club Rayo OKC earlier this season, striker Devon Sandoval has spent the past seven days with Real Salt Lake and was on the team's bench to start Saturday's matchup with the Fire.
Sandoval's loan includes options that allow RSL to recall the forward when needed.
Rayo OKC, meanwhile, appears to be in a state of upheaval. The club, currently the home to former RSL men Robbie Findley and Sebastian Velasquez, had its head coach resign and a minority owner withdraw support from the club last week.
After missing two games this week with a hip injury, RSL striker Yura Movsisyan appears to be on the mend. The team's leading goal scorer did not start against the Fire, but he was on the team's bench and available for selection. RSL's Jordan Allen, meanwhile, was not in the team's 18 Saturday and has now missed three straight games with a back injury.