HERRIMAN, Utah (Monday, January 21, 2019) – Real Salt Lake announced today the appointment of Martín Vasquez as the head coach of Real Monarchs SLC ahead of its fifth season in the USL Championship. Vasquez becomes the fourth head coach in club history, ushering in a new era for Real Monarchs.
Additionally, the club has also retained assistant coach Jamison Olave and goalkeeper coach Matt Glaeser for the 2019 USL Championship season. The club also welcomes Kyle ‘Simi’ Simkovich as the club’s athletic trainer with Marshall Stoddard making the move to FC Cincinnati for its inaugural season in Major League Soccer. Simkovich joins the Monarchs from the RSL Academy having worked with the RSL Academy U-17 and U-19s throughout the 2018 season.
“This fits really well with the progression of young players in our organization and our philosophy of promoting from within,” RSL General Manager Craig Waibel said. “Martín’s resume speaks for itself and he brings a tremendous amount of experience at top levels to the Monarchs to aid in the progression of the players within our organization from the Academy on up to RSL. With all of the youth we have in our organization, this was the right time to promote him to the Monarchs.”
Since retiring as a player in 1999, Vasquez’s coaching career has included stops with the LA Galaxy, Chivas USA, Bayern Munich and the U.S. Men’s National Team. He served as an assistant coach at each stop until making his head coaching debut with Chivas USA for the 2010 season. However, after parting ways with the now-defunct MLS club, he didn’t immediately seek another assistant job in MLS, instead opting to coach at the youth level.
Joining the RSL Academy prior to the 2011 U.S. Soccer Development Academy season, the list of players that have found success in the professional and international ranks after working through the RSL Academy with him at the helm is lengthy. It includes current Mexican National Team center back Carlos Salcedo and the slew of RSL players that have represented the U.S. at the FIFA U-20 World Cup, from Jordan Allen in 2015 to the five players donning the Stars-and-Stripes in 2017 – Danilo Acosta, Justen Glad, Aaron Herrera, Brooks Lennon and Sebastian Saucedo.
“I’m very grateful for such and amazing opportunity to join the Monarchs after eight years with the RSL Academy,” Vasquez said. “My time with the players within the RSL Academy both past and present has helped me immensely. The players’ attitudes, enthusiasm and willingness to not only better themselves as players and men, but to help me grow as a coach has been an integral part of my time as coach and is something I will forever be thankful for. It has been a privilege to be a part of such an incredible Academy side. Now with the Monarchs I’m excited to continue to be a part of the development of our players and our club as the head coach. I’m here to win with the Monarchs while continuing to help develop our players and help them reach the next level.”
Born in Yahualica, Mexico, Vasquez is one of only two players to play for the United States and Mexico internationally and knows the American soccer landscape better than most. Vasquez boasts a professional career that stretched from 1984 to 1999 where he played for U.S. and Liga MX sides, appearing over 350 times and scoring 31 goals in that time. Internationally Vasquez made 10 appearances, three times for Mexico and seven for the United States.
The list of players who currently feature on Real Salt Lake’s roster that Vasquez has helped develop through the RSL Academy to the professional level stands at 11, including reigning MLS Rookie of the Year Corey Baird, Justen Glad and Aaron Herrera all of which have spent time with the Monarchs. Since 2011, Vasquez together with members of his staff – including current RSL Assistant Coach Freddy Juarez and RSL (AZ) Director Mike Kraus among others – have helped develop an astonishing 51 players through the RSL Academy and into the professional ranks.
“We as club couldn’t be more excited to bring Martín in as the Monarch’s newest head coach,” Real Monarchs General Manager Dan Egner said. “He’s coached at the highest levels at the club level and internationally. He knows the players on our first team, in the USL and in our Academy better than anyone. We view this as the perfect opportunity to continue winning at the USL level, while developing players that can contribute to RSL. He’s done exactly that every step of the way at the Academy. This is such an incredible time for the Monarchs and we can’t wait to get 2019 underway.”
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RSL will now begin a global search for a new Academy Director.
Real Monarchs SLC will face Sacramento Republic FC on Saturday, March 9 to open its fifth campaign in the USL Championship. The Monarchs will then return home the following weekend to host league newcomer El Paso Locomotive FC at Zions Bank Stadium on March 16, a venue in which the Monarchs earned a league-best home record of 13-2-2 in 2018.
Real Monarchs SLC season tickets and single-match tickets are set to be announced and be available for purchase in the near future.