RSL Duo Called Up To Men’s National Team
Aug 01, 2015 12:22PM
● By Bryan Scott
By Ron Bevan
For the second straight year, Real Salt Lake and Utah were represented on the Men’s National Soccer Team by both Nick Rimando and Kyle Beckerman. The duo was called up to see action in a friendly with Mexico held in Mexico, and then returned to the Men’s National Team early this month. The duo traveled with the team for friendlies in Europe against the Netherlands (June 5) and Germany (June 10).
Rimando, goalkeeper for RSL, and midfield Beckerman made their first appearances on the national team for last year’s World Cup in Brazil.
“When the last World Cup came and went in 2010, I thought that might be it, my last opportunity to play for our country,” Beckerman said after last year’s World Cup. “But mentally I tried to stay ready. You never know with soccer. So if you work hard and stay prepared, if the chance comes your way you can take full advantage of it.”
“It was a dream come true for me,” Rimando said. “Any soccer player trains for the opportunity to represent their country on the biggest sporting stage in the world, that being the World Cup. So to be there to not only represent my country but my family and my club was huge for me.”
The play each put in last year, along with what they have done for RSL, helped keep interest in them for this year’s team.
Rimando has started all five friendlies of 2015 for the Men’s National Team, including appearances in 2015’s January camp against Chile and Panama. He now has 21 career appearances. He has a 13-3-2 record with four shutouts for the team.
Beckerman has 43 appearances with the Men’s National Team.
Although the chance to play on the team for the next World Cup may be a longshot – it is in three years and both will be close to 40 – it hasn’t left their minds.
“Whether we make it again or not, it has been a great ride,” Rimando said. “Kyle and I have been through a lot together. We have been on different club teams other than Real, and we have won the MLS championship and competed for a second one. It is good to have someone you are so familiar with by your side to share those moments with.”