Salt Lake silence Sounders with Saborio brace

Alvaro Saborio scored either side of half-time to lead Real Salt Lake to a 3-0 win over the Seattle Sounders in the first leg of their MLS Western Conference semi-final at Rio Tinto Stadium in Utah on Saturday.

Saborio opened the scoring in the 41st minute when he tapped in Chris Wingert's pass and the goal was allowed to stand after the referee consulted with his assistant as visiting players claimed the Costa Rican was in an offside position.

Salt Lake deserved the lead and would have gone into the break in a more dominant position had it not been for the spectacular goalkeeping of Seattle's Kasey Keller.

However, Saborio would not be denied and struck again in the 53rd minute with a cheeky back-heel and almost bagged a hat-trick 18 minutes later with a shot that flew above the crossbar with Keller beaten.

American Ned Grabavoy sealed the 3-0 victory in the 88th minute, leaving the Sounders facing a monumental task to claw their way back into the tie in the home leg at CenturyLink Field on Wednesday.