Group of investors reportedly agree to purchase Real Salt Lake
SANDY, Utah — After more than a year of searching, Real Salt Lake may have new owners. National news outlets are reporting a group of investors has agreed to purchase the team. However, the details of the purchase have not been hammered out.
Sportico broke the news that the group of investors is led by David Blitzer. He is the minority owner of the New Jersey Devils, and the Philadelphia 76ers. He also owns soccer teams in England, Germany, and Belgium. According to the report, Real Salt Lake was recently valued at $420 million.
BREAKING: A group that includes David Blitzer, co-owner of the Philadelphia 76ers and New Jersey Devils, is nearing a deal to purchase MLS club Real Salt Lake.https://t.co/YlJUKnrJdN
— Sportico (@Sportico) November 11, 2021
Details of this purchase have been extremely slow to surface. Team Spokesman Trey Fitz-Gerald says the top management has likely been very involved in the ownership discussions.
The team, however, hasn’t been paying much attention to who the new owner would be. “We have been focused on the day-to-day operations of the club,” said Fitz-Gerald.
Club officials: Real Salt Lake isn’t going anywhere
As a new owner begins to emerge, club officials have been adamant that the team isn’t being relocated. Major League Soccer commissioners have previously said the league has no plans to move RSL. And KSL Sports reports that team management told fans at a recent open house that the league will not allow the team to move to another city.
Even if the team could be relocated, Fitz-Gerald said there is too much soccer infrastructure in Utah to walk away from.
“The history of this club, the engaged and growing fanbase of this club, are all things that would preclude Real Salt Lake moving to another city.”
Fitz-Gerald expects the transition to a new owner will be a smooth one. However, new owners have been known to cause shake-ups in the teams they buy. He hasn’t been told any of the details of the sale, so he can’t say for certain when it will happen, but Fitz-Gerald believes the league wants the deal finalized by the end of the year.
“We expect the 2022 season to get back to, essentially, a March 1 type of start,” Fitz-Gerald said. “The 2022 season, we would have players report for pre-season in mid-January.”
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