Behind Enemy Lines: Three Questions With RSL Soapbox

Douglas C. Pizac-USA TODAY Sport

We talked to Matt Montgomery from RSL Soapbox about the away side's strategy going into the MLS Cup.

1) Last time between Sporting KC and RSL was an extremely physical battle between two teams that were missing players. How does a full strength lineup for both teams change this game?

I just rewatched this one a couple days ago - what a ridiculous match that was. Both sides were depleted, the referee was struggling to keep control of things, and Chris Wingert managed to get himself sent off. Inevitably, a full-strength lineup will shift the approach somewhat, but both sides played very much in their individual styles in that one. What we'll see, I suspect, is instead an elevation of play. These two sides are eminently even-matched, and that makes for something inevitably fascinating.

2) In the Western Conference final RSL was able to decimate Portland when they opened up. Do you expect more of the same in this match?

Oh, I hope so. Portland's midfield and defense are quite good, and our opening that was magnificent. But expecting the same thing might be a bit rushed: We were facing a side, after all, that struggled when not in possession. I don't necessarily see Sporting Kansas City to have the same fatal flaw. To be fair, it took us four rather difficult matches against Portland to really find that opening, and we took it incredibly well. Decimation, I'm afraid, is not very much on the cards - this will be as tight a match as we've played.

3) Do you expect either team to be cautious coming out so that they don't get carded or will the physicality be the same as it was in July?

Not particularly. I mean, both sides would love to avoid early cards, right? But the last one was odd. Chris Wingert's early crash into Kei Kamara was just a moment of madness. Nothing more, nothing less. But it set the tone for the match, and that didn't play out in our favor. We've never been good as a cautious side, so I suspect we'll come out looking for early advantages in possession. It'll be physical early - I have no doubt - but hopefully not reckless.

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