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Greetings from Salt Lake City

Good afternoon all. I have made it out to Salt Lake City for tonight’s match between the New York Red Bulls and Real Salt Lake. Tonight marks the opening of Rio Tinto Stadium and the mood around the Red Bulls seems to be a positive one.

As if the Red Bulls needed any more motivation, they received some bulletin board material from former Red Bulls midfielder Dema Kovalenko, who had some very interesting things to say about tonight’s match, and about his feeling towards Red Bulls head coach Juan Carlos Osorio.

"I was thinking all year about these two games," Kovalenko told the Salt Lake Tribune. "There and home, just against this team, because I don’t like (Osorio), at all. And I don’t care if I say it. I don’t like him. I don’t respect him. And I want to play this game, because I want to help my team to win. That’s the most important thing, to get three points."

Osorio traded Kovalenko before the 2008 season, citing concerns about Kovalenko’s salary and lack of production.

Kovalenko has been sidelined for eight games with a calf injury and may not play. If he does, things could get interesting.

I just spoke to Osorio about Kovalenko’s comments and let’s just say his response is priceless. I’ll post the response shortly.

For those of you didn’t see it, here is my preview on tonight’s match.

I will be posting periodically throughout the afternoon before I make my way out to Rio Tinto Stadium. Thanks for the suggestions on things to do in Salt Lake City. Unfortunately, it’s starting to look like I won’t get to do much before heading out to the stadium.

For now, share your thoughts on tonight’s match in the comments section below.


  1. Osario made a huge mistake trading Dema. The guy has heart and B*all$, of course this is nothing we should expect ASSorio to know or understand. Osario couldn’t even stand up to his own wife.

    His successes, oops i mean lack of successes, don’t shock me at all. He cleaned house without anything to replace the gaping holes he left.

    He deserves to have this VERY long off-season.

  2. Never thought id say this but im quite excited to watch this game. Hope the turn out is great and that the proper SSS crowd/energy is there.

  3. Definitely will be tuning in tonight. If you’re an MLS fan and you don’t get excited every time a new SSS opens, well, you’re not really a fan then are you?

    The fact that the occasion has the potential to mark another step in the Red Bulls collapse out of the playoffs…. ….a bonus.

    That someone’s talking smack about Osorio in the lead up… somebody pinch me!

    Go FIRE!!!!!

  4. As a neutral observer of this upcoming match, I’ll be looking forward to the RSL fans being awarded a brand new stadium. Here’s to hoping they can actually add atmosphere to a game.

    Especially with that Nordecke-esque supporters corner. Looks like that’s the new trend in MLS, and that’s fine with me.

    Also, I’m looking for Dema to make his mark on this match, via being on the end of a gritty goal or in the referee’s book.

    That being said, NYRB will be party poopers and win 3-2 in an exciting match. See you in the playoffs Red Bulls.

    Go Crew!

  5. Stadium is 15 miles south of downtown and the airport and wouldn’t be visible coming in from New York usually.

    If you’re looking to relax prior to the game head out to the Jordan Commons for a movie. Just don’t go to the Mayan, that’s some awful stuff. The commmons should be within walking distance from the stadium I think, although I’ve not been past the stadium site.

    Enjoy my hometown! Go RSL!

  6. yeah dema!!!! This is exactly the kind of sh*#t MLS needs and that you’ll never read about in MLS official website. Everything is so goody goody… Looks like George W moderates the thing.

    yeah, the Bush league

    please more Dema’s and Mathis’s on this league

  7. if Osorio wasnt stupid enough to trade Dema so early without a back up plan which caused a poor defensive performance first half of the season…we wouldnt have to worry about grabbing every point possible in the next 3 games to clinch play offs, not to mention how recent weeks showed that Pietrovallo is not an improvement over Dema who was lacking a south american passport..

  8. this’ll be interesting… RSL will be playing on a new stadium without their biggest advantage— their artificial turf… Dema has some stones to openly air his laundry… but thats why i like the guy…. vocal characters draw attention…


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