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Breakdown: RSL, MLS salary numbers released by Players Union

It’s salary release day, so let’s break down what we’ve learned.

MLS: Real Salt Lake at Toronto FC Nick Turchiaro-USA TODAY Sports

As is tradition at this point, the MLS Players Union released 2018 salary numbers, and we’re breaking down some of the more interesting bits from Real Salt Lake’s numbers.

But first, let’s talk about what these numbers mean.

  • These numbers don’t necessarily correlate to total compensation — so it’s not the gospel truth. There have been plenty of instances over the years where the numbers don’t reflect reality.
  • These numbers absolutely don’t reflect salary budget impact. As a start, the salary cap includes percentages increased over salary, non-monetary compensation, potential bonuses, and the like.
  • These numbers are really just a rough guide to who’s paid about how much.


  • Alfredo Ortuno is sitting at a guaranteed compensation of $1,162,500 — a significant impact that answers some questions about how the club saw his potential impact. He’s RSL’s highest-paid player, and he’s played only three games, and even when fit, he hasn’t always made the bench. If he ends up being a bust, that’s significant.
  • Damir Kreilach takes second place, making $1,013,333 in guaranteed compensation. He, however, has started every match, scored a goal, and netted two assists. It’s easy to see that his impact, while maybe not quite living up to his salary yet, is much closer to what we’d hope for from a million-dollar player.
  • Albert Rusnak is scarily close to TAM territory, which makes me wonder if we’ll end up giving him a big pay raise. He’s been one of our most impactful players since his arrival, and I’d wonder if his salary will reflect that.
  • Yura Movsisyan is still on the MLS books, of course. He’s registered to “Major League Soccer, L.L.C.” with $2,073,750 in guaranteed compensation. There’s no chance that Djurgardens is paying MLS that much for him, but it just makes us wonder about his salary.
  • Danilo Acosta got a big raise, going from $65,000 to $100,000 — after his 2017, it’s clear he deserved a bump, so getting it shows well.
  • Kyle Beckerman (35%), Demar Phillips (22%) and Nick Rimando (10%) all saw their salaries decrease, which makes sense given their age — it’s one way that MLS is necessarily different than non-salary-capped leagues and clubs.
  • The club must have some faith in Jordan Allen, because he’s gone up 26 percent — he’s making $225,000. That’s almost certainly something that was set up in his contract previously, of course.
  • Brooks Lennon’s non-loan numbers finally came through: $237,583, which is probably the most fun number of the lot.

2018 MLS Salary numbers

First Name Last Name Club Position Base Salary Total Compensation 2017 total Increase
First Name Last Name Club Position Base Salary Total Compensation 2017 total Increase
Danilo Acosta Real Salt Lake M $100,000 $100,000 $65,625 52.38%
Jordan Allen Real Salt Lake M $225,000 $225,000 $178,000 26.40%
Corey Baird Real Salt Lake F $54,504 $54,504
Shawn Barry Real Salt Lake D $131,250 $131,250
Kyle Beckerman Real Salt Lake M $505,008 $530,008 $825,000 -35.76%
Tony Beltran Real Salt Lake D $230,000 $240,950 $230,950 4.33%
Nick Besler Real Salt Lake M $67,500 $67,500
Justen Glad Real Salt Lake D $270,000 $291,700 $246,700 18.24%
Adam Henley Real Salt Lake D $115,000 $122,833
Jose E Hernandez Real Salt Lake M $67,500 $70,875 $56,379 25.71%
Aaron Herrera Real Salt Lake D $67,500 $67,500
David Horst Real Salt Lake D $125,004 $131,629 $115,004 14.46%
Alex Horwath Real Salt Lake GK $67,500 $73,363
Damir Kreilach Real Salt Lake M $900,000 $1,013,333
Brooks Lennon Real Salt Lake F $225,000 $237,583 $53,004 348.24%
Ricky Lopez-Espin Real Salt Lake F $67,500 $76,250
Luke Mulholland Real Salt Lake M $173,250 $173,250 $172,500 0.43%
Sunday Obayan Real Salt Lake M $275,000 $288,000 $253,000 13.83%
Alfredo Ortuno Real Salt Lake F $990,000 $1,162,500
Taylor Peay Real Salt Lake D $67,500 $67,500
Demar Phillips Real Salt Lake D $120,000 $126,250 $162,837 -22.47%
Joao Plata Real Salt Lake F $525,000 $683,333 $400,000 70.83%
Nick Rimando Real Salt Lake GK $400,000 $422,500 $470,000 -10.11%
Pablo Ruiz Real Salt Lake M $180,000 $201,000
Albert Rusnak Real Salt Lake M $850,008 $907,821 $882,813 2.83%
Sebastian Saucedo Real Salt Lake M $100,000 $110,500 $100,500 9.95%
Jefferson Savarino Real Salt Lake F $375,000 $398,688 $376,188 5.98%
Marcelo Silva Real Salt Lake D $675,000 $711,875 $711,875 0.00%
Luis Silva Real Salt Lake F-M $225,000 $233,667 $208,671 11.98%
Connor Sparrow Real Salt Lake GK $54,504 $54,504