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Report: Rimando to return to RSL

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USMNT veteran and current MLS free agent Nick Rimando will reportedly return to Real Salt Lake for a 12th season with the club, according to a report by Goal.com’s Ives Galarcep.

The report states he received interest on the free agent market from both Los Angeles clubs, but the 38-year-old will return to the club he has made 350 appearances for.

Rimando came to Real Salt Lake from D.C. United in 2006, and has made at least 24 league appearances in every single season since. He has also made 22 playoff appearances for the club across eight playoff campaigns.

He last received a USMNT cap in January of 2017 in a friendly against Serbia, but was part of the 2018 World Cup qualification squad throughout 2017 backing up Tim Howard. Overall, Rimando has played 22 times for the US national team, with 14 goals conceded and nine clean sheets.

The report also states that Kyle Beckerman will return to Rio Tinto Stadium, with the veteran also testing the free agent waters but deciding to re-sign. The pair will be two of just four players left on the roster from the 2009 MLS Cup winning team.

MLS comings & goings: Kitchen, Castillo, Henley arrive for 2018

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The next two weeks, leading up to players reporting for the start of preseason, are sure to be chock-full of signings made by all 23 MLS teams. A handful of key deals have been announced in the last 24 hours alone…

[ MORE: FC Dallas block USMNT call-ups in favor of CCL prep ]

For the last three seasons, the LA Galaxy attempted to play without a functioning midfield. It turned out… well, quite poorly, particularly in 2017 when Curt Onalfo’s Sigi Schmid’s side finished dead last in MLS, for the first time ever. Enter: Perry Kitchen (from D.C. United, for $300,000 in combined allocation money), five-year MLS veteran and fringe-U.S. national team defensive midfielder seeking a new club after two years in Europe (Hearts and Randers). Kitchen, who’s (somehow) still only 25, has more than 150 MLS appearances to his name (plus another 50-plus from his time in Europe). The Kitchen-Jonathan dos Santos/Joao Pedro double-pivot is a fantastic foundational unit. 7/10 — not flashy or sexy, but highly functional and priority no. 1

After finishing 20th in 2017, the Colorado Rapids’ massive rebuild has begun. Enter: USMNT and Monterrey left back Edgar Castillo, and Wolverhampton Wanderers midfielder Jack Price. Castillo is 31 and brings a wealth of experience at the club and international levels. Price, 25, joined the Wolves academy at the age of 8, and never left (save for a pair of loan spells) and made nearly 100 appearances between League One and the Championship. 5.5/10 — plugs a pair of holes with replacement-level (maybe slightly above) starters

For the first half of 2017, Real Salt Lake were arguably the worst team in MLS; for the second half of the season, Mike Petke’s side was inarguably one of the best (and youngest), ultimately missing the playoffs by a single point. So far this winter, RSL have made Brooks Lennon’s loan permanent, signed 26-year-old Spanish forward Alfredo Ortuño, and on Tuesday completed their capture of 23-year-old right back Adam Henley — an American-born Welsh international. As he’s only ever appeared in friendlies for Wales (and never played for U.S. youth national teams), Henley would be eligible for a one-time switch, should his development and play warrant such a move. 6/10 — a starting right back with upside, without giving anything away in a trade

Giles Barnes, 29, has bounced around MLS in recent seasons — from Vancouver, to Houston, to Orlando, all since 2016. Now, the English-born Jamaican international is headed south of the border, to Leon, where he’s been given a Cristiano Ronaldo-like VIP welcome.

Other lesser-known (but perhaps just as impactful) signings in MLS

Columbus Crew SC — 21-year-old Venezuelan midfielder Eduardo Sosa, from Venezuelan side Zamora (FULL RELEASE)

Minnesota United — 24-year-old Cameroonian attacker (2 caps, 1 goal) Frantz Pangop, from Cameroonian side Union Douala (FULL RELEASE)

Report: RSL to permanently sign Liverpool’s Brooks Lennon

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Real Salt Lake’s use of youth players did wonders under manager Mike Petke in 2017, and the club seems to be sticking with the philosophy moving forward.

[ MORE: Juventus president Agnelli has ban lifted by Serie A ]

Goal USA is reporting that RSL has acquired U.S. youth international and Liverpool midfielder Brooks Lennon permanently from the Premier League club, after spending 2017 on loan in Major League Soccer.

Lennon made 25 appearances for the Claret and Cobalt this past season, scoring three goals and adding four assists for Petke’s group.

MLSSoccer.com’s Sam Stejskal is also reporting that the Western Conference side managed to acquire Lennon on a free transfer, despite the youngster being under contract at Liverpool until next summer.

Woah: Kyle Beckerman cut his wild mane of hair (video)

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On Wednesday with some wild UEFA Champions League matches, it would take something special for us to profile a Major League Soccer side which failed to make the playoffs.

But, guys and girls, Kyle Beckerman got a haircut.

The Real Salt Lake and USMNT midfielder has had long dreadlocks for some time, one of the most distinguishable hair styles in the league.

[ MORE: Spurs are for real ]

No more (save one, long rat-tail looking lock).

“My wife and I started snipping some on Monday after our game, and kept going,” Beckerman said. “Feels good. I feel re-energized and I’m excited where we can go.”

Salt Lake Tribune writer Maddie Lee had the first video of Beckerman’s new ‘do, which isn’t so much about what’s there rather what’s not.

This will take some getting used to, Kyle. Does this mean Beckerman’s signaling a new era, or will he re-up with RSL? And, more importantly, did he save any of the locks?

More questions: Will the locks be die cut into the next MLS trading card set? Could he spray paint his signature onto one? And does his hair grow fast enough that it’ll be back for Spring? Kyle? Kyle!

Mike Petke handed three-year extension with Real Salt Lake

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Real Salt Lake narrowly missed the MLS Cup Playoffs in 2017, however, Mike Petke’s efforts as manager were valiant in turning the club around.

[ MORE: Did Don Garber hint towards next MLS expansion markets? ]

Those efforts didn’t go unnoticed, and the former MLS defender now has some job security with the club.

RSL announced on Thursday that Petke has earned a three-year contract extension with team, after going 13-12-4 in his first season with the Western Conference side.

“Loyalty is huge for me.  I am ecstatic about Mr. Hansen coming to me and offering me this contract,” Petke said in the wake of Thursday’s big announcement. “I’m ecstatic at the prospect of being here at least three more years.  And I’m excited and ecstatic about what I think we can accomplish together – Mr. Hansen, (General Manager) Craig Waibel, myself, the players … the whole organization.  I’m on cloud nine because I have an owner who values me, likes what I’m doing and wants to reward me for that.”

The 41-year-old took over for Jeff Cassar, who was at the helm for RSL since the start of the 2014 regular season, on March 29 and narrowly missed out on the postseason — finishing just one point behind the San Jose Earthquakes for sixth place in the West.

[ MORE: Whitecaps throttle Earthquakes en route to West semifinals ]

Prior to taking the reins as manager, Petke managed RSL’s USL side, Real Monarchs FC, briefly with just one match under his belt in 2017.

Petke began his managerial career in 2013 when he was selected to coach the New York Red Bulls, whom he spent seven of his 14 MLS seasons as a player.