In this day that only continually gets longer and more exhausting, Real Salt Lake head scout — under furlough, it should be said — Andy Williams spoke to KSL Sports and really put himself out there.
In the interview — the full transcript is below, but it’s a legitimately great interview and should be watched for full effect — Williams spoke out about Dell Loy Hansen, his refusal to invest in scouting at the club, and more.
Tom Hackett conducts a very good interview here that you’ve got to watch.
Andy Williams Joins Tom Hackett To Discuss His Experiences At Real Salt Lake
Former player and head scout joins Tom Hackett to discuss his experience while playing and working for Real Salt Lake following criticism of the owner Dell Loy Hansen's comments made earlier today.Posted by KSL Sports on Thursday, August 27, 2020
Honestly, I have not seen the exact remarks. I just woke up with a lot phone calls, tweets, text messages. My girlfriend woke me up, oh my god oh my god, are you watching this right now?
I have not seen his exact words, but based on the comments and the perceptions I’ve got from people, it’s not great.
I agree with all of that, but you have to take in context what’s going in the world right now. Seeing what the NBA did yesterday, you have to take a stand. You have to follow — not follow, but you have to open your eyes and open your heart to what’s going in the world right now. It’s crazy right now, I agree with all the sports guys — LeBron, Donovan Mitchell. It is crazy we’re being dealt with right now. It’s sad, and it’s the story right now, and I hope it will change in the future.
He’s never invested in the team. He doesn’t spend. Scouting doesn’t exist. I don’t go anywhere, my staff doesn’t go anywhere. We watch soccer like everybody else on the TV. With him saying that, that’s crazy. He doesn’t invest in scouting, he’s not trying to improve the team to currently. He’s trying to spend the least money as it is to survive, which is sad. The fans here deserve a lot better.
My VP of Soccer Operations — who I have not spoken to since April — I got furloughed in April, and today was the first day he texted or tried to call whatsoever. Apparently he says his messages didn’t go through. I think it was just damage control, which is sad, to be honest.
It’s been in demise for a while. I’m not holding back anything right now. Mr. Hansen, Dell Loy, I don’t think he wants to win anything. I think it’s maybe a tax write-off for him, to be honest. It’s tough seeing where we were. I’ve been here since 2005. Back in 2005, we were the worst. Moving forward to that 2009 championship, best team in MLS ever, ever since he’s taken over, it’s been cutting budget, cutting budget, staff — it’s just been not the greatest.
Any meeting with him, it’s always positive. You’re doing great, the team’s doing this, we’re going to do that. When push comes to shove, it doesn’t happen. It’s not what he says at all whatsoever, I think he’s more interested in collecting pennies.
Like I said, I haven’t been there since April, so I would assume — I’ve spoken to Nedum a couple of times since all this has gone down. I don’t want to say my backbone, per se, but he’s reached out to me on my own. I’ve never spoken to him face to face, but once he heard about our staff being furloughed, he reached out to me point blank, with “Hey Andy, is there anything I can do for you? Can the team help you?” He got together a few players, maybe the whole team, I don’t know, and helped me out during this time.
When he came here on trial, I can say he’s someone that I can say I brought here. But I didn’t know he’d be somebody that would help me out a year later.
It was a lot worse than everybody thinks it is.
So I haven’t heard from my GM, my technical director, I haven’t heard from either of them. Even Tony Beltran. Seriously, assistant GM at the moment. I played with Tony. His entire career. He was the first assistant GM in January. Not to hear from him either is shocking to me. I’ve known Elliott since he was an intern, starting with RSL back in the day. Elliott was an intern in 2006, 2007, I don’t know the year. Not even a text or a call. That’s it. It’s shocking. It’s sad.
With all that’s going on in the world right now, I don’t want to go there. I can’t put it to them. I don’t think it’s in them to do that. What’s going on with Black Lives Matter, all that stuff, not even throwing me a bone? Really? To this day, it’s shocking, and it hurts.
I woke up to that a couple days ago. A buddy of mine texted me, “Hey, what does this mean for you?” As of now, I still talk to the coaching staff every now and again. RSL’s my heart. I watch every game. I still watch every game, even now. I still talk to the coaching staff, Freddy, Tyrone. The coaching staff said they’re getting scouting stuff from Alex Howarth. He’s assistant technical director. When the coaching staff says they laughed at what he sent, I don’t think that’s great.
The team wants to get better. We need to get better everywhere. It doesn’t matter if it’s Albert or Damir, you always try to get better. That’s not happening right now. It’s not great.
If they offered, 100 percent. I’ve been here forever. I only want to see the best for this club. I love this team. I love the fans here. I love the state entirely. But I have to do what’s best for me and my family. I’ve been working on my resume for the last two weeks, and I’ve started sending it out to people. But I don’t know what’s going on. If you look on the website for RSL, I’m still the head scout. I’ll always be here, no matter what. Five, ten years down the line. This is the team that made me. I want to give back no matter what.
I did a couple interviews earlier today, and he’s not what he’s portrayed to be. You can see him walking around the stadium and being happy to fans. But — big but — that’s all I’ve got to say.
I just think we need an owner that’s willing to invest in players. I’ll give it up to Dell Loy. New academy, all that stuff out in Herriman. That’s the best thing ever. Royals, too. You add them. But, I think we need someone who wants to win, first and foremost, and is willing to provide players or money to get players that can be in that process. When I was there, it was, here’s what we have to spend. It’s a needle in a haystack. It’s throwing darts on a wall — this guy’s good, he was good a year ago. It’s sad, and it’s frustrating to me as a former player and scout. My job is to make this team better. If I’m not given the tools to do that, it’s not that great to me.
No. We have a conversation every year, three months, about budget for players. When it comes down to the line, it’s “Oh no, I’m not going to spend that.” You’re working your way through that year, six months, when it comes down to certain players, and all of a sudden, “Nah.”
We’ve been offered players for free that would have benefit to this club, and all of a sudden, it’s, “ah, na.” (TH: Because he doesn’t want to pay their salary?) Yeah.
If you look at Damir, you look at Albert. We spent money. We bought good players because scouting was decent. But if you look, we still don’t have a number nine who’s consistently playing. We haven’t had the budget to spend for a number nine. We don’t have the option. We just keep shooting ourselves in the foot. We’ve been lucky — Albert, Damir, Everton, Nedum — at getting those guys that have produced. That’s not just because of scouting. That’s total luck.