Real Salt Lake Front Office Still With Plenty Of Work Remaining

Jan 26, 2023, 3:12 PM
Jefferson Savarino gazes into the distance at Q2 Stadium during the opening round of the MLS Cup playoffs. (Photo by Laura Dearden/Real Salt Lake)
(Photo by Laura Dearden/Real Salt Lake)

SALT LAKE CITY – What should Real Salt Lake fans expect in year two of the David Blitzer and Ryan Smith reign?

The offseason thus far has been interesting. Fans online have expressed excitement and disappointment regarding certain moves made by the front office.

The big news of the offseason has been the purchase of Carlos Andrés Gómez, which broke the club record transfer fee formerly held by Jefferson Savarino. Gómez will join the club shortly and look to insert himself immediately into Pablo Mastroeni’s starting XI.

The young Colombian is an exciting prospect and will be an intriguing story to follow throughout the 2023 MLS season.

Real Salt Lake Needs More Depth

However, despite the acquisition of Gómez, the club still needs more depth at certain positions if it hopes to contend for silverware in 2023.

A defensive midfielder and striker headline the needs for Real Salt Lake. Currently, 31-year-old Scott Caldwell is the only true number six on the roster. Caldwell is a talented player, who can influence games but is not capable at this point of his career of leading the defensive side of the midfield. The club was recently rumored to be negotiating with Colombian Gustavo Cuéllar, but the deal fell through. Cuéllar remains a perfect fit for Real Salt Lake. His addition, or someone of similar talent, would completely revolutionize the manner in which the midfield trio of Braian Ojeda, Pablo Ruiz, and Jasper Löffelsend operated. 

The striker position is also in desperate need of attention. The offseason has already seen Bobby Wood and Sergio Cordova leave the club. In a press conference earlier this week, general manager Elliot Fall spoke on the Cordova departure and confessed that the club is still interested in having Cordova return to Real Salt Lake in 2023 but the terms of the deal must work for the club. FC Augsburg and Real Salt Lake are yet to agree on what those terms would look like.

Regardless, assuming Cordova does not return, the striking position is left with the likes of Rubio Rubin, Anderson Julio, Danny Musovski, and Axel Kei.

Interestingly, LAFC has admitted that Chicho Arango is available to be purchased if the correct offer was made. If Real Salt Lake is serious about collecting silverware under the new ownership, the addition of Arango would immediately provide Real Salt Lake with enough weapons to succeed.

The other position that would benefit from an addition is the left or right back position. Following Aaron Herrera’s departure, Andrew Brody and Bryan Oviedo are the two candidates to fill the right-back and left-back positions respectfully. However, if one or both suffer injuries at any point throughout the season, (which is likely given that Real Salt Lake could play up to 55 games in 2023!) Mastroeni would be struggling to find an adequate replacement.

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Real Salt Lake Front Office Still With Plenty Of Work Remaining