The Real Salt Lake Stadium, “The RioT”
Rio Tinto Stadium is lovingly referred to as the “RioT” as a shortened version of the stadium sponsor. Over the years, the RioT, a soccer-specific stadium — home to both Real Salt Lake and the Utah Royals, has been good to Real Salt Lake the teams in the Claret and Cobalt (which included the Monarchs for their first season). The Real Salt Lake soccer stadium resides in the greater-Salt Lake Metropolitan area (specifically in Sandy, Utah). The new Real Salt Lake Stadium featured its first event on October 9, 2018, although most of the season was played at the inaugural stadium (Rice Eccles Stadium at the University of Utah).
Capacity: 20,213 (for MLS games)
As you can see in the graphic below the Riot has been a fortress for Real Sale Lake, having three of the four longest unbeaten runs in the MLS is a bonus for any club’s home stadium. If you’re a Real Salt Lake fan, you have the ability to call this rocking stadium (literally — we’ll get there in a minute) their home.
Starting June 6, 2009 — the club would go on a huge unbeaten streak at home totaling 29 games! Even better, 20 of the 29 games were victories. Shockingly, this also coincides with the year that Real Salt Lake was able to win the MLS Cup. As far as I know, this is still the most impressive unbeaten run by any MLS club (at least by the number of games).
Real Salt Lake’s Rio Tinto Traditions:
Real Salt Lake’s Stadium has a couple of major traditions, the first is the club anthem and the second is brand new.
The history of the Real Salt Lake anthem was started by Branden Steineckert (possibly better known from his role as drummer in Rancid) who composed a club Anthem “Believe” in 2011. The song is sung as part of a pregame ceremony, throughout the game, after goals, and to close out a home victory. Fans of visiting teams have been in awe of the united voices of Real Salt Lake supporters belting out the chant and trying to urge their team to victory!
Here’s the Real Salt Lake official release (with a pretty sweet hype video)…
Planting of the flag
Beginning in the 2019 season, Real Salt Lake added a second major tradition. The tradition stems from Brian Dunseth’s goal, the first in Real Salt Lake home history, where he ran to the corner and “planted the flag” establishing the club. As a result, it was determined that after each home game — the team would gather while the Man of the Match (selected by coach Petke) plants the flag into a stand in front of “the RioT” (the Real Salt Lake supporter’s section). The inaugural “flag plant” was done by none other than Brian Dunseth himself (who now works as a Real Salt Lake commentator). The celebration may have changed a little, and Brian has moved on from the team; however, now a little piece of what he brought will live on. If you want to see that magical moment, it’s right… here.
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