It can sometimes be difficult to figure out the reason Real Salt Lake is playing a particular game. Saturday is their home opener—sort of. It’s their home opener for the Major League Soccer; they already played a home game in something called CONCACAF—which obviously has a name that’s much too long if the acronym is seven letters—where they might play an MLS team in a game that doesn’t count in the MLS standings, or they might play somebody from a foreign country they’ve never played before.
There’s also something called the Open Cup they sometimes play in, and soccer teams occasionally schedule something called a “friendly” where they play somebody just for the hell of it. It’s like if the Jazz played the Spurs one night in an NBA game, played a team from Panama another night, and then threw the Lakers on the schedule for a midseason game that didn’t count in the standings.
While it can get confusing as to the “who” or “why,” all that matters when it comes to “where” is that when Real Salt Lake plays at Rio Tinto Stadium—no matter the occasion, league or reason—they’ve been impossible to beat for nearly two years. Real has a 35-game unbeaten streak at home—dating back to May 2009—on the line this weekend when the L.A. Galaxy, the team Real beat to win the MLS Cup in 2009, come to town with David Beckham and Landon Donovan.