Real Salt Lake Survives St. Louis City SC Expansion Draft

Nov 11, 2022, 6:31 PM

Pablo Mastroeni - Watches - against- san jose...

Real Salt Lake manager Pablo Mastroeni watches from the sidelines during the 2-2 draw against San Jose Earthquakes at PayPal Park on July 30. Photo courtesy: Laura Dearden of Real Salt Lake.

SALT LAKE CITY – Real Salt Lake survived another expansion draft after St. Louis City SC did not pick any of the 11 players that were unprotected.

Instead, Lutz Pfannenstiel, the sporting director at St. Louis City SC, announced five draft picks on Friday evening.

Nicholas Giocchini, the 22-year-old, who recently returned to the United States following a seven-year stint in Europe, was selected as the number one overall pick. Giocchini played six games for Orlando City in 2022 but failed to produce a goal or assist.

Giocchini will have a new start as he departs for St. Louis City SC.

The second pick of the expansion draft was Indiana Vassilev, the former Inter Miami midfielder. New England Revolution defender Jonathan Bell went with the number three pick, while FC Cincinnati defender John Nelson was drafted at number four.

Interestingly, Jake La Cava was picked with the number five pick but was immediately traded to Inter Miami for allocation money.

Nick Besler, Scott Caldwell, Maikel Chang, Tomás Gómez, Bret Halsey, Erik Holt, Johan Kappelhof, Jonathan Menéndez, Rubio Rubín, Marcelo Silva, and Bobby Wood were all unprotected and available to be selected by St. Louis City SC.

The Real Salt Lake front office will now continue to work on constructing an improved roster ahead of the 2023 season. Silva is engaged in negotiation with the front office to return following his contract expiration, KSL Sports has confirmed. No news has followed Wood who concluded his 2022 season sidelined with an abductor injury. The 29-year-old has endured multiple seasons with a significant injury. His future at Real Salt Lake remains in question.

Future Key Offseason Dates

  • Nov. 16 – Free AgencyOpens (11 a.m. MT)
  • Nov. 17 – Re-Entry Process, Stage 1 (11 a.m. MT); End of Year Waivers (3 p.m. MT)
  • Nov. 22 – Re-Entry Process, Stage 2 (11 a.m. MT)
  • Dec. 21 – 2022 MLS SuperDraft presented by Adidas
  • Jan. 3 – 7 – 2023 MLS Preseason Begins
  • Feb. 25 – 2023 MLS Season Kicks Off

  • Real Salt Lake Leaders

  • Real Salt Lake Standings

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Real Salt Lake Survives St. Louis City SC Expansion Draft