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Jason Kreis converts Salt Lake valley into Real fans

Published: Monday, July 8 2013 5:00 p.m. MDT

Real Salt Lake coach Jason Kreis watches as his team plays  the Chicago Fire on Saturday, May 25, 2013, at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy. (Tom Smart, Deseret News) Real Salt Lake coach Jason Kreis watches as his team plays the Chicago Fire on Saturday, May 25, 2013, at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy. (Tom Smart, Deseret News)

From his time as a player in Salt Lake City to his tenure as head coach that is now reaching into its seventh year, Jason Kreis has his name all over Real Salt Lake soccer.

And, he is converting the Salt Lake valley into Real fans while continuing to build and mold a franchise that has established itself as a contender in Major League Soccer.

During his time as a player, when he finished as the MLS all-time leading scorer, to his capability as a front-office administrator, Kreis has shown the leadership needed to guide a successful franchise, Livui Bird of SoccerWire.com wrote in a recent feature on the RSL head coach.

“If I’m an aspiring head coach, I’d come out here, and I’d want to watch Jason Kreis’ training sessions,” veteran defender Nat Borchers told Bird. “I don’t think anybody else in this country runs a training session as well as he does.”

Bird points out that part of the decision-making validity Kreis has with his players is the reputation he built as a player, and it has carried over to his training techniques and personnel decisions. Through his guidance, Rio Tinto Stadium has become one of the MLS' toughest places to play for visiting teams.

According to Bird, RSL's technical staff, from the general manager to assistant coaches, is the only one in the league made up entirely of former MLS players.

“I am flabbergasted that no other MLS team yet has identified that one of the core strengths we have is that everyone in the front office has played in the league for five years or more,” RSL General Manager Garth Lagerwey told Bird. “I just think we have a high soccer IQ, and I think we have a lot of people who know what they’re doing.”

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