SANDY, Utah, Sept. 10, 2022 (Gephardt Daily) — The home of Real Salt Lake has a new but familiar name.
The Major League Soccer club announced a revised partnership with longtime sponsor America First Credit Union to immediately rename the Sandy stadium as America First Field.
RSL’s home field had been known as Rio Tinto Stadium, aka The RioT, since it opened in October 2008. The club, now in its 18th season, played its home games at the University of Utah’s Rice-Eccles Stadium from 2005 to 2007.
A news release from Real Salt Lake said the club’s “ardent fan base will continue to be known collectively as ‘The Riot,’ providing the passionate heartbeat emanating from the South End each game.”
The stadium itself, however, is now America First Field.
“Since our inaugural game back in 2005, America First Credit Union has supported Real Salt Lake’s connection with this community, offering our amazing fans numerous in-stadium, grassroots and digital initiatives,” RSL President John Kimball said at a news conference at the stadium Saturday announcing the deal.
“Both RSL and America First Credit Union share many tenets, including an ambitious vision of, commitment to, and innovation for our collective community. The depth, breadth and term of this naming rights deal for America First Field is exemplary of that partnership, and we look forward to further deepening our jointly held roots across not only the great state of Utah but throughout the Intermountain West,” Kimball said.
Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.
In addition to putting its name on the stadium, America First Credit Union also is offering an RSL debit and credit card that provides cardholders discounts on tickets, concessions, merchandise and special access to events.
“We’re elated to expand our relationship with Real Salt Lake and Major League Soccer by having our name on this elite sports and entertainment venue, and by offering the exclusive RSL-branded credit card and debit card,” said Thayne Shaffer, America First President and CEO. “This partnership will provide value to our members and help us continue to invest in our community and in organizations that support individuals, families, and businesses as they work toward their personal and financial goals.”
Real Salt Lake has played 269 games in the Sandy stadium, with a record of 154 wins, 66 draws and 49 losses for a home winning percentage of nearly 70% and 1.96 points per game.
Two finals also have been held at what’s now America First Field: the second leg of the 2010-11 CONCACAF Champions League Final and the 2013 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Final.
Nearly 50 clubs and national teams from more than a dozen countries have played at America First Field across numerous competitions, including MLS, National Women’s Soccer League, the MLS All-Star Game, Olympic qualifying, World Cup qualifying, Gold Cup, USL Championship, and the MLS NEXT Pro invitational.
The Utah High School Activities Association also has held boys and girls soccer games at the stadium.