PARK CITY Real Salt Lake's reserves put a whoopin' on the San Jose Earthquakes Sunday reminiscent of the one the senior squad doled out Saturday night.
Matias Cordoba recorded two goals and an assist to lead RSL's reserves to a 4-0 thrashing of San Jose at Quinn's Junction.
"He's been very good the last few reserve games for us," said RSL assistant coach Brian Johnson. "He was very good on the ball for us."
The Argentine midfielder has only made three appearances with the first team this season, but if he continues to show well in reserve games, more playing time seems inevitable.
With the win, RSL's reserves improved to 2-1-1 on the season and are still very much in the hunt for the Western Conference reserve crown.
Johnson believes Sunday's easy win was all about coming out with the right attitude.
"I think it was a good extension from last night, a good carry over," he said. "These games, a lot of it is mental getting up for these games. There's many mental things you can instill in them before the game starts, to make it an extension of last night and continuing the trend."
It didn't take the RSL reserves long to get things going and build off Saturday's 3-1 win over the expansion Earthquakes. In the 27th minute, RSL defender Dustin Kirby pushed into the attack on an overlapping run and made the most of his chance with a 25-yard blast that bounced in off the far post.
Less than 10 minutes later, Cordoba got in the mix by scoring on a breakaway opportunity created by a quick restart from Real Salt Lake.
RSL maintained the 2-0 lead until halftime, and from there continued to pile it on in the second half.
Cordoba upped the advantage to 3-0 after being dragged down in the penalty area following a creative dribbling run through two defenders and easily burying the ensuing penalty kick.
Two minutes later, RSL rookie forward Tino Nunez slipped in just behind San Jose defender Greg Curry ironically enough the same defender who fouled Cordoba and rifled a shot off the keeper's fingertips for the 4-0 cushion.
"He's a guy who we've liked since day one, and we got him late in the draft. We thought he could be a sleeper player and he has progressed from Day 1," said Johnson. "It's real important that we bring him along and he does these baby steps to get to where he needs to be."
Having the confidence of the veteran players around him, which he does, has really helped with Nunez's confidence according to Johnson.
In addition to the offense clicking right along, Real's defense also played well on Sunday.
"Whether it's first team or second team we're looking to keep it as tight as we can, the less space for them to play in the better for us," said Johnson. "I thought the spacing was very good from front to back."
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