RSL: Signed to a Senior contract as a International Player on 5/04/09, returning to squad after signing with Venezuelan side Deportivo Anzoátegui in 2008-09 offseason
RSL: Signed to a Senior contract as a Senior International on 8/17/07
Seemingly overshadowed by other forwards every since he joined Real Salt Lake five years ago, the attention turned Fabian Espíndola’s way in 2011 seemed to increase. Then again, everything involving Espíndola seemed to be ratcheted up a notch last season – his focus, an already-high energy-level and even his notoriety across the league all received noticeable bumps. However, the most important thing the fiery Argentine increased last year was his production, as Espíndola knocked home a career-best 10 goals in league play and added a goal and two assists during RSL’s CONCACAF Champions League run that allowed to Utahns to continue their historic path to the tourney’s finals.
It’s easy to forget that Espíndola was a part of the massive rebuilding process that Jason Kreis began midway through 2007; and yet, at the same time, it seems hard to think about RSL without the passion and grit of the 26-year-old forward. Re-signing Espíndola was priority #1 for Real Salt Lake this past offseason, and when two sides were able to agree to a four-year pact you could almost hear an audible sigh of relief from Claret-and-Cobalt fans near and far. With his regular up-top running mate, Álvaro Saborío, a question mark for the start of the campaign, the scoring burden will likely fall to Espíndola – then again, that’s something the confident striker will likely pick up as well.
2011: During his fifth season on the Wasatch Front, blew away previous career highs in goals (10), assists (3), shots (62), shots on goal (31), appearances (27), starts (25) and minutes (2,096) while tying his previous best in assists (3) … Finished just one goal behind Saborio in the chase for RSL’s Golden Boot scoring title … Finished the season first in RSL’s record book in shots on goals (92) and second in goal (26, three behind Findley) and shots (184) … Ended the year T-4th across MLS with a 50.0% shot-on-goal percentage … Also added a goal and two assists while starting all six Championship Stage contests in the CONCACAF Champions League, helping lead the Claret-and-Cobalt to the brink of a historic title … Recorded secondary assist on Morales’ game-winning tally on 3/01 v. CLB, RSL’s second finish in a dominant 4-1 win in the 2nd leg of the CCL Quarterfinals in Sandy … In the CCL Semifinal opening leg on 3/15 v. Saprissa, assisted on Saborio’s opener (9’) before adding one of his own (56’) in a crucial 2-0 win that set the tone of the series … Played 175 of the 180 available minutes in the CCL Finals series against Monterrey … Shook himself out of post-CCL funk with a torrid June/July, scoring five goals in a seven-game stretch between 6/04 v. VAN and 7/09 v. DAL … Registered third 1G/1A game in league play during 62-minute effort on 8/20 @ HOU in a heart-breaking 2-3 defeat … Notched second brace of MLS career on 9/21 @ NY, pacing RSL to a 3-1 road win … Would play all 270 minutes of RSL’s run in the MLS Cup Playoffs.
2010: Logged 1,945 minutes of action in 29 games (23 starts) across regular season and cup competition, scoring eight goals and adding a pair of assists along the way … His six goals in League play were the third most on RSL in 2010 and his highest goal haul in four seasons with the squad, while his 22 appearances and 19 starts in MLS play were also career highs … Began season in fine fashion on 3/27 @ SJ, first setting up Javier Morales’ GWG in the 14th minute before bagging one of his own in the 27’ minute of RSL’s thorough 3-0 win … Performance marked second 1G/1A game for Espíndola with RSL [8/26/09 v. CHV (4-0 W)] … Played the final 40 min. in RSL’s USOC qualifier on 04/14 @ SJ, helping the Utahans fight to the finish for a 3-3 draw that it advanced from 5-3 in PKs …Emergence from bench on 5/22 @ CHV proved a master stroke by Kreis, as his 89’ tally gave RSL a huge 2-1 road win at The Home Depot Center … Followed that a week later by opening the scoring on 5/29 v. KC (31’) in a 4-1 win that exacted revenge for RSL’s previous home loss more than a year earlier … Opened another scoring onslaught v. NE on 7/02, his 27’ goal opening the flood gates in a 5-0 triumph, the second largest winning margin and goal-scoring output in club history … Enjoyed impressive four-game run in MLS play in late summer, notching an equalizing goal (17’) in a 1-1 draw on 8/11 @ PHI, a GWA three days later on 8/14 v. CLB (Morales – 11’) in a 2-0 triumph, and the GWG on 9/04 v. NY (4’) in a contest that equaled the all-time MLS home undefeated streak record at 22 games … In the middle of that stretch, participated in one of the most memorable games in CCL history on 8/25 @ Cruz Azul, scoring a goal in the 64th minute that put RSL up 3-1 at the Estadio Azul in an eventual 4-5 defeat … Started both contests in RSL’s Western Conf. Semifinal Series vs. FC Dallas, jolting the series to life with a sudden blast from the edge of the area just five minutes into a 1-2 defeat in Leg One on 10/30 at Pizza Hut Park.
2009: Returned to Real Salt Lake in May and went on to notch three goals and assists in 23 games (17 starts) for his new/old side … Officially rejoined RSL on 5/04 (his 24th birthday) after leaving last offseason to join Venezuelan side Deportivo Anzoátegui … Made eventful return to RSL two days later on 5/06 v. LA, aiding in the 2-2 tie by drawing the stoppage-time PK converted by Johnson … Scored on 6/20 @ HOU, marking his first goal since 8/29/08 v. COL, when he scored twice in 2-0 win, helping him earn MLS Player of the Week … Played the entire second half of the 2009 XanGo Cup on 7/11 v. Club América, helping the squad to a 1-0 triumph … Multi-point game on 8/26 v. CHV marked first such performance in nearly a year (8/29/08, 2G v. COL) … Started in 17 of RSL’s last 19 regular season contests up top [Missed 8/29 @ KC(coach’s decision) & 7/18 @ CLB (red card on 7/03 v. SJ)] … Scored insurance tally on 10/14 v. NY, his 90’ tally securing a 2-0 victory and vital three points for the then-playoff hopefuls … Started in both RSL wins in its Eastern Conference Semifinal Series against the defending champion Columbus Crew (65 min. on 10/31 @ RSL, 64 min. on 11/05 @ CLB) … Was hauled down inside area by Hejduk at the end of the first half in Leg Two, the resulting conversion by Findley (47+) standing as the series-clinching tally (4-2 agg. win) … Came off the bench on 11/14 @ CHI in the Eastern Conf. Championship, logging the final 48 minutes in the nail-biting 0-0 draw that RSL advanced out of via a 5-4 PK win … Also appeared off the bench on 11/22 v. LA in MLS Cup 2009, his energy providing a spark that helped RSL continue to push through to the end of the 1-1 draw, which was followed by RSL’s 5-4 PK triumph.
2008: Produced in limited minutes while hobbled by numerous injuries, scoring five goals in just 642 minutes across his 12 appearances (8 starts) … Opened his scoring ledger for the season on 4/12 v. DC, notching RSL’s second (19’) in a 4-0 rout at Rice-Eccles … Scored again in next appearance on 5/03 v. LA, tallying just six minutes in to give RSL a lead in
the eventual 2-2 draw … Goal off the bench on 5/24 @ DAL in 69th minute gave RSL a short-lived lead in a disappointing 1-2 loss at Pizza Hut Park … L knee sprain suffered on 5/31 v. SJ lead to two-month hiatus from play … Returned to play on 8/16 @ HOU, coming off the bench at the half to play 45 min. in the 3-4 defeat … Returned to starting line-up with vengeance on 8/29 v. COL, scoring both goals in RSL’s 2-0 Rocky Mountain Cup win, a performance that led to his first career MLS Player of the Week honor … Saw regular season ended prematurely a week later on 9/06 @ LA, suffering a severely sprained ankle after celebrating an apparent goal just nine minutes into the contest … Returned in time to
be available for MLS Cup Playoffs, coming in off the bench in the Western Conf. Semifinal Series against Chivas USA in both the first leg on 11/01 @ RSL (6 min.) – the team’s first ever postseason contest (1-0 W) – and a week later on 11/08 @ CHV in the away leg (2-2 T) … DNP on 11/14 v. NY in the Western Conf. Final (coach’s decision).
2007: Joined Real Salt Lake as a Senior International after signing with the club on 8/17/07 … Made his MLS debut on 8/18 v. CHI with an 32-minute substitute appearance in a 2-0 defeat … Scored first goal, the game-winner, in just his second start on 8/29 v. KC … Notched first assist in MLS play on 9/29 @ NY, his laid-off ball in the 75th minute resulting in a Kyle Beckerman goal ... Served a one-game suspension 9/19 v. LAG for a red card (red card on 9/15 @ TFC).
International Club Career
2009: Deportivo Anzoátegui – Venezuelan First Division
2007: Sociedad Deportivo Quito – Serie A Ecuador (First Division)
2006: Sociedad Deportivo Aucas – Serie A Ecuador (First Division)
2006: Talleres de Córdoba – Primera División Argentina (First Division)
2005: Boca Juniors - Primera División Argentina (First Division)
REGULAR SEASON GAME HIGHS
Goals 2 – 2 times, last: Sept. 21, 2011, RSL at NY
Assists 1 – 10 times, last: Oct. 22, 2011, RSL vs. POR
Shots on Goal 4 – Sept. 3, 2011, RSL vs. PHI
Shots 6 – 4 times, last: Sept. 3, 2011, RSL vs. PHI
Fouls Committed 5 – 4 times, last: Oct. 1, 2011, RSL at LA
Fouls Suffered 3 – 7 times, last: Sept. 28, 2011, RSL vs. CHI