If Real Salt Lake were to sign Yura Movsisyan, it would mean a pretty big change in the makeup of the squad. Not since maybe 2007 has RSL regularly made a particularly big switch.
2007 was a big year for that: RSL brought in Yura Movsisyan, Javier Morales, Fabian Espindola, Chris Wingert, Kyle Beckerman, and others.
Since those days, there's been a marked consistency to the roster within the constructs of a season. The list of truly significant players who ended up with RSL in the summer isn't particularly long. We have players like Robbie Russell and Will Johnson (both 2008) and Sebastian Jaime (2014), but aside from those, our midseason signings haven't exactly been sparkling.
And it's not even that those players that have come in have been bad — it's more that trying to bring in players to an established team makes for a difficult time, and it's rare that you'll see those players find true success.
But those players brought in have also either been squad players or hot prospects who haven't really panned out. Stability sort of necessitates that while still remaining open to change — at least nominally open to it — but it doesn't make for exciting news.
For the first time since that 2007 year, it's starting to look like Real Salt Lake could really use some change. Whether that's internal change or external change is hard to really say without delving into too much psuedopsychological analysis of players and coaching, but it's at least worth thinking about.
So — back to the man that's brought this all to the surface, Yura Movsisyan. If he were to come back to RSL, it would mean the most significant roster shift since that 2007 season, which can't be beat in terms of importance to the future of the club. But here's the thing — those post-2008 shifts haven't necessitated moving a major piece of the puzzle.
All the shifts have come by necessity of one form or another, whether that's because a player wants to go to Europe (see: Movsisyan and Findley) or because the MLS Expansion Draft is robbing us of part of our squad, or because there's a particularly great offer on the table. The 2012-to-2013 transition saw change, but it was also not change that saw immediate and significant acquisitions. They were salary cap-enforced changes, where RSL simply couldn't sustain a squad packed with able-bodied veteran MLS players near the peaks of their careers. That's MLS for you.
But back to the question: What happens if Movsisyan comes in? It's the sort of move that could be hugely disruptive to RSL's squad. It would almost certainly moving a significant player, and while everyone's floated moving Alvaro Saborio or Luis Gil in a bid to bring back Movsisyan, those certainly aren't the only options — they're just the most obvious ones. Other options? Let's just say that outside of Kyle Beckerman, Nick Rimando, Joao Plata, and Javier Morales, nobody is particularly safe. There are positions where we'd be less likely to move a player simply because of depth concerns, and there are some where we'd see more upside to keeping a player than trading, but I wouldn't rule anything out at this point.
And at the same time, don't rule Movsisyan in, either. Just because he might be coming back to the U.S. doesn't mean that he's coming back to Real Salt Lake. Like RSL communications told us yesterday, the club is 'open to options' in regards to Movsisyan, and that should be interpreted as broadly as possible.