SALT LAKE, Utah (Vavel) — The long rumored deal has been completed: Armenian striker Yuri Movsisyan is returning to Real Salt Lake as an on loan Designated Player from Spartak Moscow of the Russian Premier League.
Movsisyan was with the Utah club from 2007-2009, and made 48 appearances for the Claret-and-Cobalt while scoring 15 goals. His first stint at the club came to a fairytale ending when he won the 2009 MLS Cup Final before moving on to Danish side Randers FC.
“For me, it’s been a long time I’ve been wanting to come back,” said Movsisyan in a team statement. “Obviously Salt Lake was my first choice because it was such a great place for me and my family. I felt at home in Utah. Leaving with a championship — I want to come back and do that again. I want to win more championships with Salt Lake — with the club that I was part of the evolution. I was part of the team that went basically from the bottom to being champions. This is what I want to do again and what I’m excited about. For me, it’s an amazing thing to come back.”
Since leaving Rio Tinto Stadium, Movsisyan has bounced around in both Denmark and Russia. With Randers, he played in the Europa League, and made such an impression that he attracted the interest of FC Krasnodar. After two seasons there, where he averaged nearly a goal every two games, the Armenian international moved to Spartak Moscow, one of the most storied clubs in Russian history. He went on to make 62 appearances for The People’s Team while scoring 25 goals.
In addition to his club career, the striker brings with him an international pedigree. The 28-year-old has scored 10 times in 35 appearances for his national team. The RSL hierarchy are clearly hoping that he will bring that quality to their team once again.
“Yura is a goalscorer,” said RSL general manager Craig Waibel. “He’s always been a goalscorer and statistically speaking, his numbers are undeniably productive no matter where he’s played. He’s at an age right now and at a point of his life right now, he had a priority with his wife that they wanted to move back to the States. Everything just added up to make sense for him to come. We have an undeniable interest to bring in good soccer players and goalscorers and Yura is one of those. We believe he’s a double-digit goalscorer and we’re really excited to get him back out on the field and start producing.”
The Claret-and-Cobalt will be hoping that he can bolster what was the league’s second worst offense in 2015.