With a handful of departures and the team in need of reinforcements for 2012, Real Salt Lake have holes to fill this offseason. To that end, RSL's technical staff has gone abroad in search of new talent.
Head coach Jason Kreis has been to South America and Europe in the past few weeks, while his assistant coaches have also spent recent weeks scouting the NCAA Tournament. Meanwhile, general manager Garth Lagerwey is on a trip to Asia.
But according to Lagerwey, that's the easy part of the process.
“The problem for us is never that we can’t identify players,” Lagerwey told ESPN700 Sports radio in Salt Lake City last week before departing on his latest trip. “The question is how do you find the right mix to [fit them] in your budgets? That’s the process that we go through.”
The culmination of this process will begin later this month, as RSL’s extensive traveling comes to an end and the decision-making process begins.
“We are gathering information right now,” Lagerwey said. “As you know, [Kreis] was in South America, he’s in Europe right now. I’m headed to Asia this week. So we are doing our globetrotting right now and then we will meet back in Utah in the end of December and assemble everything that we have gathered and look at our cap situation and we’ll try to start putting the puzzle together.”
The team will be looking to replace recently departed veterans Andy Williams (retirement) and Robbie Russell (trade), as well as youngster Collen Warner (Expansion Draft). That likely means a few midfielders and an outside back will be among the targets.
In addition, the technical staff seems focused on adding some speed, as pace seemed to be in short supply during 2011. Whether they will actually be able to find it in a form that fits their budget remains to be seen.