Nat Borchers Signs Contract Extension through 2014

MLS Best XI defender fifth player to re-up with Utah side this offseason

Borchers_south-end-crowd (620x350)

Photo Credit: 
George Frey / Getty Images

CONTRACT OF 2010
MLS BEST XI DEFENDER NAT BORCHERS EXTENDED THROUGH 2014 SEASON

2010 MLS Defender of the Year Finalist the Fifth
Player to Re-up with Real Salt Lake in Last Three Months;
 

Best XI Back to Comment on New Deal Today at 5:40
p.m. MT on ESPN 700’s “Bill and Spence Show”

SANDY, Utah (Monday, February 14,
2011) – Capping an offseason of unprecedented stability, Real Salt Lake
continued to secure its core membership for future seasons with today’s
announcement that 2010 MLS Best XI defender Nat Borchers has agreed to a
contract extension with the 2009 MLS Cup Champions. The revamped deal will keep
Borchers, the team’s reigning Defender of the Year and a finalist for the 2010
MLS Defender of the Year honor, in Claret-and-Cobalt through the 2014 season.
Per club policy, financial terms of the contract will not be disclosed.

Borchers’ new deal will be among the many
RSL-related topics the stalwart center-back will discuss during his weekly
Monday conversation with hosts Bill Riley and Spencer Checketts on today’s
edition of ESPN 700’s “Bill and Spence Show” at 5:40 p.m. MT.

"Once
again, we couldn’t be more pleased that a key member of our squad has made a
commitment to Real Salt Lake for the long-term,” said Real Salt Lake General
Manager Garth Lagerwey. “Nat’s
leadership qualities both on the field and in the locker room have been a vital
part of our success and will continue to be in the seasons to come.”

The contract extension for Borchers marks the
latest master-stroke of a successful 2010/11 offseason for the Real Salt Lake
Technical Staff, today’s announcement coming on the heels of similar agreements
with GK Nick Rimando (2013) and MF Will Johnson (2014) within the last
month. In addition, the Utah side shored up its attacking corps across November
and December by making 2010 MLS Newcomer of the Year Álvaro Saborío (2014) the team’s first Designated Player, trading
for El Salvadoran international and MLS veteran Arturo Alvarez during the Expansion Draft, and extending the loan
deal for exciting Brazilian striker Paulo
Jr.
through 2011, with the option to purchase his rights through 2014 at
season’s end.

“I feel fortunate to have come to a
long-term agreement with Real Salt Lake because I believe we have something very special happening
with this team right now,” said Borchers. “Before these talks started I came to
the club and told them that I didn’t want to play anywhere other than here, so
I’m thankful we got a deal done and am looking forward to helping out the team in
any way I can. We’ve got a lot of good years left in the core group we’ve
locked up, so I couldn’t be more excited for the future of Real Salt Lake.”

The 29-year-old Borchers received
long-overdue accolades and praise during a 2010 season in which he anchored a
defense that was the best in Major League Soccer’s 15-year history, the team
smashing the League mark for goals allowed in a regular season by allowing just
20 tallies in 30 contests (previous mark of 23 GA set by Houston in 2007). In
addition, no one was more responsible for RSL’s 567- and 568-minute shutout
streaks – the third and fourth longest such marks in League annals – as
Borchers was on the field for all but 27 minutes of the regular season, leaving
the field only towards the end of a season-opening 3-0 win at San Jose after
suffering a severe gash on his head during a collision for a 50-50 ball.

The Colorado native was also a key cog in the
team’s successful run in CONCACAF Champions League Group A play, starting five
of the six Group Stage contests en route to Real Salt Lake becoming the first
Major League Soccer side to win its group in nine tries since the competition’s
reformatting for 2008/09. RSL’s resident “Ironman,” who finished fifth across
MLS in minutes played (2,673), would have started in all 40 of Real Salt Lake’s
regular season, CCL, MLS Cup Playoff, and Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup contests in
2010 had it not been for the coaching staff, which forced him to stay in Utah
during the team’s longest road trip of the season to Panama in August in order
to get some well-deserved rest for the stretch drive of the campaign.

While known for his cerebral, yet physical
approach to the center back position, Borchers also provided an offensive punch
last year, starting off his trio of clutch goals on March 14 at San Jose, his
header with two minutes remaining in added extra time tying the U.S. Open Cup
Qualifier at 3-3 and allowing RSL to advance minutes later via a 5-3 triumph in
penalties. Late in the season he produced unlikely and timely goals off of a
pair of backwards headers while crashing the penalty area, his tally in
stoppage time on Sept. 25 against Colorado extending RSL’s League-record home
undefeated streak to 24 games via a thrilling 1-1 draw, and a repeat performance
a week later starting the scoring in a 2-1 win at New England that marked the
squad’s first-ever win on an artificial surface.

Click here for Borchers’
full bio on RealSaltLake.com

Borchers and the rest
of the Real Salt Lake squad will kick off their 2011 slate in just eight days
time, when the Claret-and-Cobalt will head to the Midwest to take on MLS cohort
Columbus Crew in Leg One of their CONCACAF Champions League Quarterfinal series next Tuesday, Feb. 22 – a 6:00 p.m. MT kickoff that fans can take
in at the Official RSL Watch Party in
the Rio Tinto Stadium Budweiser Club restaurant
. A week later on Tuesday, March 1, the series shifts to
Sandy and the fortress that is Rio Tinto Stadium, where RSL will look to defend
its 33-game home unbeaten run across all
competitions
in the second and decisive leg, with kickoff set for 8:00 p.m. MT.

Fans can secure their
seats now for both Real Salt Lake’s March
1 CONCACAF Quarterfinal Leg Two fixture against the Columbus Crew
and its March 26 MLS home opener against the Los
Angeles Galaxy
via the “RSL 2011
2-Pack”
(beginning at just $80) and the “RSL 2011 Flex 10-Pack” (beginning at $200). Both of these special
ticket offers, in addition to single-game
tickets for all 2011 contests and RSL 2011 Season Ticket Packages
, can be
purchased online at www.RealSaltLake.com, over the phone
at 801-727-2700, or in person at the
Rio Tinto Stadium box office during
regular business hours: 10:00 a.m.–6:00 p.m. MT.

 

TRANSACTION: Real Salt Lake extends contract of defender Nat
Borchers through the end of the 2014 MLS season.

 

www.RealSaltLake.com / www.RioTintoStadium.com / www.ESPN700Sports.com