“I had offers from other countries to go and play, but I wanted to keep playing for RSL,” Morales said. “Utah is like a second home to me and the people in Salt Lake – the fans, my teammates and my coaches – have always made me feel very welcome. I just want to keep playing for them and doing good things for the club.”
“No matter what happens in the future, RSL and Utah will always be in my heart. I can’t wait to be back in Salt Lake City to start training with the guys to get ready for the season.”
Morales, who turned 33 on Jan. 10, first signed with RSL on Aug. 17, 2007. One of the Claret-and-Cobalt’s longest-tenured players, Morales finished the 2012 season first on the team in assists (9) and tied for fourth on the team in goals (3). The 2012 campaign was Morales’ first full season after returning from a brutal leg injury suffered in May 2011.
One of the most talented players in club history, Morales is first all-time for RSL in assists (44), fourth in goals (20), seventh in appearances (127) and seventh in minutes played (10,023).
“We’re thrilled that Javier will be back with us for the coming season,” Real Salt Lake GM Garth Lagerwey said. “He’s one of the best players in RSL history, is incredibly dynamic on the field and is a stabilizing force off of it. We couldn’t be more excited to have him back for 2013 and we’re very eager to see what he brings to the field.”
Morales will report to Rio Tinto Stadium for the start of Real Salt Lake’s preseason camp on Saturday, Jan. 18.