SANDY — Luke Mulholland’s journey away from Real Salt Lake lasted about 20 days.
The veteran midfielder has signed a new contract with Sandy’s Major League Soccer club, RSL announced Wednesday afternoon. Per league and team policy, terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Mulholland’s return in 2019 will mark his sixth season with Real Salt Lake. The Preston, England, native was originally acquired prior to the 2014 season, but he missed most of last year after undergoing back surgery.
A former standout midfielder with the Tampa Bay Rowdies in the former North American Soccer League, Mulholland made 122 appearances for RSL, including 97 starts, while scoring 16 goals with 16 assists.
Mulholland was one of 10 players who had a team option declined following the 2018 season, but general manager Craig Waibel revealed a few weeks later that the club had reopened negotiations on a new deal with the midfielder.
Another of those declined options to re-sign with the club is veteran defender Tony Beltran, who missed all but one game of the 2018 season with a serious knee injury.
"Last year was a difficult season for me because I’ve never missed a game because of injury," Mulholland said in a statement. "Dealing with that adversity made it the toughest season of my career, but I’m happy with my health right now and I’m delighted to stay with Real Salt Lake.
"I feel like I have unfinished business and the best is yet to come for Luke Mulholland, and I’m really excited to give my best for the fans in Utah."
Mulholland joins longtime defensive midfielder Kyle Beckerman at the club, as well as recently signed Brazilian holding mid Everton Luiz, who will join the club from Italy’s SPAL in time for preseason training camp in late January.
Salt Lake opens the 2019 season March 2 in Houston. The home opener at Rio Tinto Stadium is scheduled for a week later against Vancouver Whitecaps FC.