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MLS Preview from The Sports Network



Friday, July 4, 2014 (All times Eastern)

New England (7-6-2) at Real Salt Lake (6-3-7), 10 p.m.

Sandy, UT (SportsNetwork.com) - A pair of struggling sides will meet at Rio Tinto Stadium on Friday as Real Salt Lake plays host to the New England Revolution.

Salt Lake has lost three of its last four games to slip into a tie with the Colorado Rapids for second place in the Western Conference.

The Claret and Cobalt are now 10 points back of first-place Seattle Sounders FC, a deficit that places added pressure on Jeff Cassar's men to claim maximum points on Friday.

"It's a home game. It's July 4," Cassar told reporters. "We need three points without a doubt. I would say every game now is extremely important. But anytime you're playing at home, it's key."

Salt Lake has been hampered by the absences of Kyle Beckerman and Nick Rimando, who have been on international duty with the United States national team for over a month. Without the duo, the Claret and Cobalt have produced a less-than-stellar 1-3-2 record.

The United States was ousted from the World Cup by Belgium on Tuesday, but don't expect to see Beckerman and Rimando return to action with RSL on Friday.

"When they come back in town, I'll talk to them and see where they're at," Cassar continued. "But I imagine we're going to have to be smart and give them a little bit of time off. ... There's a lot more games left in the season."

New England also enters Friday's clash desperate for points.

The Revs were flying on a run of six wins in seven games, but they have lost their last three outings to drop to third place in the Eastern Conference.

New England's last contest ended in a disappointing 3-1 home defeat to the Philadelphia Union, a second consecutive home loss.

"You can say it's an off night, you can say it wasn't our night," Revs head coach Jay Heaps said after the match. "But that's the easy way out."

Goals were plentiful for the Revs during an impressive stretch that saw them win five straight by a combined score of 16-5, but the well appeared to run dry last time out as Teal Bunbury, Diego Fagundez and Patrick Mullins all spurned chances inside the opening 15 minutes.

"I thought we should've taken our chances in the first 15 minutes," Heaps said. "Then I thought we were second-best, quite frankly. So the bad goal was kind of the final straw of that first half. I don't think we were good enough all the way through, so that goal really hurt us."

07/03 17:05:55 ET

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Scoreboard
Local
Final
CAR 10
NOS 28
Final
ORL 98
WAS 105
Final
MIN 97
DET 91
Final
CLE 90
NYK 95
Final
DAL 120
UTA 102
Final
LAC 93
OKC 90
7:00pm Tonight
IND
MEM
 
8:00pm Tonight
CHI
CLE
 
8:30pm Tonight
MIL
PHI
 
10:00pm Tonight
SAC
POR
 
10:00pm Tonight
PHO
SAN
 
10:30pm Tonight
LAL
LAC
 
Final
LOU 31
FSU 42
Final
GASO 42
TROY 10
8:00pm Tonight
TULA
CIN
8:02pm Tonight
MEM
TULSA
Final
BUF 2
BOS 3
Final
PIT 3
LOS 0
Final
NJD 2
WIN 1
Final
FLA 2
ARI 1
Final
OTT 4
CHI 5
Final
TAM 4
PHI 3
Final
STL 2
ANA 0
Final
MIN 4
SJS 3
Final
COL 5
NYI 0
Final
VAN 3
MON 2
7:00pm Tonight
CLB
TOR
 
7:30pm Tonight
DET
LOS
 
8:30pm Tonight
DAL
ANA
 
9:00pm Tonight
CAL
NAS
 
Final
CAR 10
NOS 28