SANDY, Utah — This offseason will be different than any other so far in Real Salt Lake midfielder Will Johnson's career.
No, it's not the fact that the MLS offseason for a playoff team is only about eight weeks.
"It feels like it's getting shorter every year," said Johnson.
And no, it's not the fact that his RSL club could have sweeping changes this offseason. But the main difference for Johnson is the fact it is his first offseason with his daughter, Arabella Capri, who was born in early October. Spending time with family is one of Johnson's main plans for the upcoming weeks.
"I'll travel a little bit, see my parents, see my fiancé's parents and this season, just chill out with my daughter," said Johnson of his plans. "When we are so busy in the summer, we miss out on some of the family things, so for me, I spend a lot of time doing family things.
"I think for me it just makes me appreciate the little things," added Johnson of having his daughter. "I'll enjoy getting to just stay around her and not always have to be taking off for practice."
Another thing Johnson plans to do is simply get away from the game for a bit. But after undergoing his exit physical, the Canadian international took a couple minutes to reflect of Real's season.
"It's funny. It feels very disappointing, but you go back and look at everything and we had our most successful regular season we've ever had together as a group," said Johnson. "Obviously, we're still improving in some aspects, but for such a talented group of guys it feels like a bitter disappointment. Somewhere you've got to put that disappointment aside and figure out how we can continue to improve.
"Every year we've gotten better. We've become more successful, we've gotten more points. We've become a better road team each and every year, so there are a lot of positives still there. I think there is still a lot of drive in this group."
So what does Johnson feel RSL need to take that next step and reach their goals?
"Everything. I think we could use a little more cover all over the field except for maybe goalies — I think we're pretty set there," said Johnson.