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2017 Player Profiles: Demar Phillips

Competition for playing time and injuries leads to minutes decline in 2017

MLS: Real Salt Lake at Seattle Sounders FC Jennifer Buchanan-USA TODAY Sports

Throughout 2016 Demar became a staple in the back from RSL, he played in 29 matches getting 2177 minutes. He got five assists for the team and was a staple at left back for RSL, with little competition for his starting spot due to injuries and national team call-ups for most the 2016 season.

As 2017 began, most expected RSL to continue starting Demar Phillips as their starting left back. However it wasn’t until the third game of the season, in LA, that Demar saw his first minutes of 2017, partially due to a minor muscle injury early in the season. Following his injury Demar once again became the staple in the starting 11 we were used to seeing in 2016. In the first nine games following his injury he was back in the starting 11.

Unfortunately on May 15, 2017 Demar got another muscle injury that would keep him out for eight games. It was this second injury that caused him to see the major decrease in playing time. Even after returning from injury Demar got very few minutes due to the recent discovery of Danilo Acosta’s talent at left back. Acosta, being just 20 years old, was showing his strengths at left back. Since Demar was just returning from injury the Real Salt Lake coaching staff often times elected to give Danilo the minutes to help him gain more experience.

Demar was able to play in 13 matches this season, getting two assists in those games. Despite his injuries prohibiting him from being able to play as much as in years past, he still helped the team when he was on the field. RSL got five wins, one of them being the 6-2 demolishing of the LA Galaxy, with Demar on the field this season. Demar also is a regular with the Jamaican National Teams having 72 caps and 12 goals.