18-year-old midfielder Luis Arriaga didn’t get much of a chance to make his mark with Real Salt Lake in the 2019 season after being signed to a Homegrown Player contract just a year ago. In fact, he made two appearances totaling four minutes — playing one minute against LAFC on March 23, and then three more minutes at Seattle on April 6.
That doesn’t mean he only played four minutes of professional soccer, though. He made plenty of appearances with the Real Monarchs in the season that saw them rise all the way to winning their first-ever USL Championship title. Arriaga made 22 appearances overall for the Monarchs, with 12 of those coming as starts. While he didn’t score any goals, he notched four assists and showed some promising play for the USL side.
Joining the RSL academy when he was just 14, Arriaga earned his contract when RSL signed him in late November 2018. Up to that point, he had scored 55 goals in his career dating back to 2015 when he joined the academy.
With RSL losing a few of its attacking players this offseason in Brooks Lennon, Bofo Saucedo, and Joao Plata, while also sending Kelyn Rowe off to New England, there’s a chance that Arriaga may be able to see some more minutes next season. Newly-appointed head coach Freddy Juarez may be more inclined to play the younger kids as much as he can also, with his rich history with the RSL academy himself.
Time will tell what’s in store for Luis Arriaga in 2020 and beyond, but no matter what does or doesn’t happen, he’s got a long and bright future ahead of him.