The goalkeeper position at Real Salt Lake is one that holds a particularly special place in supporters' hearts. The RSL faithful have grown accustomed to having steller play in the net, in large part thanks to Club legend, Nick Rimando.
Thanks to the former U.S. Men’s National Team goalkeeper, the standard set in goal at RSL is high. With this latest crop of keepers, the Club again feels to be in safe hands with three talented players more than capable of winning the team games.
Last season, starter Zac MacMath made history of his own, becoming RSL’s first ever Ironman. The shot-stopper played the full 90 minutes of every MLS match between the sticks while setting personal records and helping the Club to its second consecutive postseason appearance.
In the wings behind him are a young U.S. Youth National starlet eager to continue his development with the first team and a steady and reliable veteran keeper with starting experience across the United States.
This is your 2023 Real Salt Lake Goalkeeper Positional Preview.
Zac MacMath entered the 2022 season prepared for an opportunity to start in goal, but knowing he was second in line. When that opportunity presented itself before the first game of the season, he seized it. MacMath then went on to play every minute of every MLS match for RSL, setting personal and Club records along the way. He finished the year sixth in the league in saves (102), the most in his career, and fourth in the league in clean sheets (10).
MacMath enters the 2023 season knowing full well he’ll be the man in the net for the Claret-and-Cobalt and will look to build upon his successful 2022 campaign.
One of the crown jewels of the RSL Academy, Gavin Beavers’ upside is as large as his 6'4 frame. Once the youngest ever goalkeeper to appear in a USL Championship match, Beavers is now a MLS NEXT veteran at the age of 17. After making 15 appearances for Real Monarchs in 2022, he took a trip to England with fellow RSL Academy goalkeeper Fernando Delgado and Real Monarchs Goalkeeper Coach, Mirza Harambasic to train with Premier League side Crystal Palace.
“You talk about the Premier League, and playing there feels so far away but when we were there Gavin and Fernando both did extremely well. It was like we saw that these big goals are attainable,” Harambasic said.
“The boys were in there, they competed and they showed their value and, and I’m really, really, really proud of 'em by all counts. They did a very, very good job over there.”
Now back and training with the first team, Beavers will aim to push both veteran keepers on the roster.
Tomás Gómez :
Tomás Gómez returns to Real Salt Lake after serving as Zac MacMath’s primary backup during the 2022 season. The Georgetown graduate made one appearance for RSL against Atlas FC during the Club’s League Cup Showcase match. He also played for Real Monarchs, starting in four games and making 19 saves during the 2022 MLS NEXT season. Gomez’ has played across an array of Club’s during his professional career including USL Championship sides Sacramento Republic, Pittsburgh Riverhounds and St. Louis FC. He’ll enter the 2023 season looking to add competition to Beavers and MacMath and add depth on the first team roster.