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Real Salt Lake re-signs homegrown defender Donny Toia

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Toia re-joins the roster after his contract had expired at the end of the 2019 season.

MLS: MLS Cup Conference Semifinals-Real Salt Lake at Seattle Sounders FC Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

After Real Salt Lake announced its roster decisions last month, it was a little surprising to see that Donny Toia hadn’t signed a new contract. More and more time went by with no word on the club’s first-ever homegrown signing, leading us to wonder if he was coming back at all.

Wonder no further, because the club announced today that the 27-year-old defender will in fact return for the 2020 season. This will be his third season in total with RSL, which includes 2011 and 2019. Of course, he didn’t play a single minute way back in 2011 before he left for FC Tucson, but he was a regular starter last year after RSL picked him up from Orlando City.

“Donny is a player who has been a part of the RSL family since he was a standout youth player in Arizona. He’s proven himself a steady, reliable performer and someone who we can count on to bring professionalism and hard work, day in and day out,” said RSL General Manager Elliot Fall in a club press release. “We are very happy to know that we can extend his time with the club for several more years to come.”

This shores up the backline a bit more with the recent announcement of Aaron Herrera’s re-signing, as well as outside back Alvin Jones who signed a contract with RSL a couple weeks back.

Toia became a staple for the team this last year, playing 24 regular season matches for RSL and making the starting lineup all 24 times, even scoring a goal to boot. He also played in both of RSL’s playoff games.

“Donny was very consistent for us and helped solidify the back line to help make us one of the best defenses in the league,” RSL coach Freddy Juarez stated in the club press release. “He earned his spot by putting his head down and working and every day he was consistent.”