SANDY — Another change came for Real Salt Lake on Friday.
With just two matches remaining in the regular season, the club and general manager Craig Waibel have mutually agreed to part ways, RSL announced. Waibel had served as general manager since August of 2015.
“I appreciate Craig coming to Real Salt Lake for the 2014 season as part of the coaching staff. Craig oversaw the organization’s integration of the Real Monarchs, Utah Royals FC in the National Women’s Soccer League, and the relocation and expansion of the Real Salt Lake Academy, which now trains and plays at the Zions Bank Training Center in Herriman, Utah,” Real Salt Lake Owner Dell Loy Hansen said in a statement. “Craig has been instrumental in the Club’s rapid growth and I wish him success in the future.”
Waibel's departure comes in the wake of the club choosing to fire former head coach Mike Petke last month. And the two decisions might have been linked as well. The lawsuit that Petke has filed against the club, alleges that Waibel and executive vice president of soccer operations Rob Zarkos told Petke that they planned on leaving after the season was over.
“It’ll be at the end of the year, because I also don’t think Dell Loy should ever be rewarded for who he is,” Waibel is alleged to have said, according to the lawsuit.
RSL reached the postseason in two of Waibel’s three full seasons as GM and is in a position to earn a playoff berth once again in 2019.
“I would like to thank Dell Loy Hansen for the opportunities presented to me over the past six years,” Waibel said in a statement. “During this time, I have experienced an incredible amount of personal and professional growth and I am proud of the work we have accomplished.
“While I am stepping away to take some time to evaluate the next step in my career, I want to wish Dell Loy, the locker room, and most importantly, the fans nothing but the best in their pursuit of the 2019 MLS Cup.”
Elliot Fall, who has served as the club’s assistant general manager, has been named interim GM. Fall has been with the club in multiple capacities since 2007.