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Emanuel Reynoso’s banner day leads Loons to 3-2 win over Salt Lake

Reynoso is heating up again, and the Argentine star has propelled the Loons to consecutive wins for the first time since mid-April.

MLS: Real Salt Lake at Minnesota United FC
Minnesota United midfielder Emanuel Reynoso faces Real Salt Lake goalkeeper Zac MacMath on Sunday in the first half at Allianz Field in St. Paul.
Matt Blewett / USA Today Sports
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ST. PAUL — When Emanuel Reynoso got hot at the end of the 2020 season, Minnesota United went on a roll to the Western Conference final.

Reynoso is heating up again, and the Argentine star has propelled the Loons to consecutive wins for the first time since mid-April.

Reynoso scored two goals in MNUFC’s 3-2 win over Real Salt Lake on Sunday night at Allianz Field. He also scored a brace in a 3-2 win over L.A. Galaxy on Wednesday.

Reynoso banged in a close-range shot in the ninth minute. He drew a penalty kick in first-half stoppage time, and his shot was saved from the spot by Zac MacMath, but he tapped-in the rebound for a comfortable 2-0 lead at the break.

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Fragapane is on a team-friendly guaranteed compensation of $257,000, per MLSPA, and has been one of the most productive Loons over his two seasons.
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Without him, the Loons are clinging to one of the final playoff spots with two games remaining.
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With Minnesota’s playoff positioning slipping in three straight scoreless losses, a goal and a point will be precious. But they lost points from a winning position at home.
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After a slow start, the Loons ascended to be one of the league’s best through late August, netting 26 out of the next 33 points during that stretch.
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Reynoso, who has a team-high 10 goals, tweaked his right ankle before halftime of last Saturday’s 3-0 loss to FC Dallas.
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Matt Navratil, a 26-year-old from Burnsville, Minnesota, is a diehard Loons fan and a season-ticket holder who travels with his parents, Scott and Chris, to a few road games each season.
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The Loons dealt with a steady stream of pressure, but made the most of their few opportunities to take all three points on the road.
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One of Dayne St. Clair’s first soccer memories is from roughly 20 years ago with him juggling a plastic balloon at his grandmother’s home in the Toronto area. The young Canadian wasn’t yet good enough with his feet to keep a heavier soccer ball aloft; he needed an inflatable orb that would hang in the air a bit longer.

But Reynoso’s best bit of brilliance was his assist to Luis Amarilla in the 61st minute. Reynoso dropped into midfield, collected the ball, turned and threaded a pristine pass to a on-running Amarilla. It sprang a breakaway and Amarilla chilled MacMath.

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It’s all reminiscent of two years ago when Reynoso had 10 assists and two goals in the final six games of the 2020 regular season and three MLS Cup Playoff games.

The Loons needed all three as RSL clawed back two goals after the 70 minutes. Minnesota has allowed eight goals after the 50th minute in the last four games.

Reynoso was voted into the 2021 MLS All-Star Game but didn’t play in the showcase in Los Angeles due to injuries. His hot play is making his likely inclusion in the St. Paul showcase in August more warranted.

Minnesota improved to 7-8-3 and Salt Lake fell to 8-5-5.

Briefly

Without Kervin Arriaga (ankle) and Joseph Rosales (suspension), Robin Lod made his first start as central midfielder. The Finnish international usually plays right wing or striker for Minnesota but goes central for the Finland national team and subbed in there for MNUFC in late May. … Announced attendance was 19,647. … The Loons next opponent, Vancouver Whitecaps, pulled off a stunning 1-0 home win over LAFC on Saturday. LAFC was without star Carlos Vela (leg), but came into the game with an MLS-high 36 points. Minnesota will go to British Columbia for a rare Friday night match. … MNUFC2 throttled Vancouver Whitecaps 2 with a 2-0 win in Blaine on Saturday. Loons outshot Vancouver 23-4 and 12-1 on target. Aziel Jackson scored one goal, giving him 10 goal contributions (six scored, four assisted) this season.

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