Real Salt Lake

2005 - present

Nicknames: RSL, Claret and Cobalt, Royals


MLS Cup 2009

Stadium: Rio Tinto Stadium

Owner: Dell Loy Hansen

Current Roster

In July of 2004, Dave Checketts and Major League Soccer Commissioner Don Garber announced that the dream of bringing world-class soccer to the great state of Utah had come to fruition. The mission was simple: create an internationally-recognized soccer brand, one which would become the flagship franchise of a growing American soccer league. Real Salt Lake was born.

July 14, 2004 was the landmark day when Utah was officially awarded the 12th MLS franchise. In attendance were many of Utah’s top government, youth soccer, business and community leaders as Real Salt Lake became a reality. 2005 was Salt Lake's first MLS season, and they were greeted by widespread delight by the Utah region.

The club was named “Real”, meaning royal in English, after its aspiration to be linked with the Spanish game and subsequently RSL set up links with Real Madrid in 2006. Typically clubs named Real have to have links with the Spanish royal family, but RSL’s link with Madrid made it official and have given the side a certain aura since its inception in 2005.

This partnership also saw a significant investment from Real Madrid in youth players, as RSL developed one of the very first MLS “youth systems” providing housing, training and soccer facilities for children aged between 12-18.

The clubs colors are claret red, cobalt blue and royal gold and the teams mascot is known fondly as “Leo the Lion.” The crown on their badge also represents the royal connection with Madrid and the clubs colors also figure prominently. Salt Lake's home is named the Rio Tinto Stadium, they moved there in 2008 after spending their first three seasons at the Rice-Eccles stadium on the University of Utah's campus.

Real Salt Lake’s first major title came five years into its existence as they lifted the 2009 MLS Cup in Seattle after defeating LA Galaxy 5-4 on penalties, after drawing 1-1 with LA in regulation. Nick Rimando was the hero for RSL, as he saved two penalties, and Robbie Russell scored the winning spot kick to seal the Utah sides first ever championship.

Notable Players

  • Freddy Adu
  • Jeff Cunningham
  • Robbie Findley
  • Clint Mathis
  • Chris Klein
  • Jason Kreis
  • Yura Movsisyan
  • Eddie Pope
  • Robbie Russell
  • Andy Williams
  • Kyle Beckerman
  • Javier Morales
  • Nick Rimando
  • Alvaro Saborio

Notable Coaches

  • John Ellinger, 2005-2007
  • Jason Kreis, 2007-2013
  • Jeff Cassar, 2014-present

2005 | 2006 | 2007 | 2008 | 2009 | 2010 | 2011 | 2012 | 2013 | 2014