Real Salt Lake has announced the signing of Swiss left back Chris Kablan on loan from Waasland-Beveren, a club owned by Bolt Football Holdings — the David Blitzer-owned group that owns Crystal Palace and FC Augsburg, among others.
Kablan joins on loan “through the summer,” but the club holds an option to extend him through the 2022 season, as well as the 2023 season.
Kablan, 27, joined second-division Belgian side Waasland-Beveren in 2021 from Swiss outfit FC Thun, where he’d played since 2017. While he’d be a constant figure at Thun, he played roughly half of Waasland-Beveren’s matches, suffering an ankle sprain in early February. He didn’t play for the club from that point forward. Transfermarkt records him as having only missed two matches through injury, but the data in regard to injuries is often incomplete.
It will be interesting to see if Kablan can make the jump to MLS — or if, indeed, MLS is a higher level than the second-division Belgian league. He’s had some very good goalscoring seasons for a left back, including a five-goal season in 2020 in the Swiss top division with Thun.
RSL general manager Elliot Fall:
“Bringing Chris to Salt Lake has been discussed for an extended period with both our technical group and the Blitzer football staff. We are excited to see how he integrates with the group, his ambition to seize this opportunity, and his potential to provide further depth for our roster. During his time in Belgium, Chris has demonstrated versatility in both a back three and a back four, he can play anywhere across the line, wherever Pablo and the staff might need.”
“My arrival to RSL has been long-anticipated, I’ve heard that everything is well-placed for our success as a locker room and as a Club. The facilities are excellent, the staff is organized, I’m looking forward to getting to know my teammates, our fans and the community-at-large.”