SANDY, Utah (Monday, January 4, 2021) – Real Salt Lake announced that the club has signed defender Justen Glad to a new multi-year contract, keeping one of the great success stories from the Real Salt Lake Academy with the club for four more years.
“Justen is a proven high-level starter in this league and at 23 years old has significant room for growth as well,” RSL General Manager Elliot Fall said. “We are thrilled to have him on board long-term and see him continue to cement himself as a leader in our locker room.”
Glad, 23, signed as a Homegrown Player in April of 2014 and has since appeared in 126 career regular season matches, notching three goals and one assist. He enjoyed a breakout season in 2016, when he started in 27 matches. He followed that up with 18 starts in 2017 after spending much of the season away on international duty and started in 50 consecutive matches for the club over two seasons from 2017-2018. For his efforts, he was voted by his teammates as RSL’s Defensive Player of the Year in 2016 and 2017.
In addition to his regular season successes, Glad has appeared in four matches in the MLS Cup Playoffs with RSL, along with two appearances in the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup and one in CONCACAF Champions League. Across all competitions, Glad has 135 games played with RSL.
“I love RSL and having come up through the Academy and seeing the club put their faith in me from the very beginning has been an amazing feeling,” Glad said. “I’m excited to continue this journey with RSL and I think we’re at a critical point within the organization right now. I’m excited to be a part of pushing this club in the right direction and elevate it to new levels.”
Off the field, Glad has been a staple in the community, earning RSL Co-Humanitarian of the Year honors in 2016 along with Jordan Allen. He has been heavily involved in the club’s efforts promoting cancer awareness, often taking the time to visit with children battling cancer. He also was a frequent visitor to local schools for assemblies promoting healthy eating and activities before the pandemic in 2020 limited such opportunities. In addition, he has taken the lead on RSL’s voting campaigns in 2016, 2018 and 2020.
On the international stage, Glad played a key role for the U.S. U-20 National Team in its run to the CONCACAF U-20 Championship in 2017, eventually making a run to the quarterfinals of the 2017 FIFA U-20 World Cup. Already a regular at the U-17 level while playing with the RSL Academy, he has continued to climb the ladder with the U.S. National Team and figures to play a role with the Olympic team when it continues qualifying for the 2020 Summer Olympics, to be played in the summer of 2021 in Japan. He has also been called in to the U.S. National Team’s January camp three times, but has yet to earn his first cap with the Senior National Team.
“We think he’s one of the top center backs in the league and has a ton of experience already at a young age. He’s still continuing to grow – he gets better every year,” RSL Head Coach Freddy Juarez said. “Most importantly, it’s always a beautiful thing to continue to work with a Homegrown who has so much love for the club and more importantly a great human being. I’m excited about and happy to have Justen Glad come back.”
Prior to becoming a regular at the MLS level, Glad played in seven matches with Real Monarchs in the club’s inaugural season in 2015 and has played 15 matches in the second division, including six with the RSL Reserves in the USL Pro in 2013 and 2014.
TRANSACTION: Real Salt Lake signs defender Justen Glad to a new contract.
Real Salt Lake current roster as of 01/04/21
Goalkeepers (2): Zac MacMath, David Ochoa
Defenders (7): Justen Glad, Aaron Herrera, Erik Holt, Ashtone Morgan, Noah Powder, Marcelo Silva, Donny Toia
Midfielders (7): Nick Besler, Bode Davis, Damir Kreilach, Everton Luiz, Justin Portillo, Pablo Ruiz, Albert Rusnák
Forwards (9): Corey Baird, Andrew Brody, Maikel Chang, Chris Garcia, Milan Iloski, Douglas Martinez, Justin Meram, Jeizon Ramirez, Tate Schmitt