Real Salt Lake General Manager Craig Waibel announced on Friday that the club has signed RSL Academy product DF Aaron Herrera after three seasons with the University of New Mexico, making him the 14th Homegrown Player signed to RSL’s roster.
“Aaron is another example of a player who developed under Martin Vasquez and Freddy Juarez at our Academy and put in the work to become a professional. There are so many different paths those players have taken, but it just goes further to emphasize that there are so many different ways to successfully develop talents in this country,” Waibel said in a press release. “We are extremely proud of Aaron for his accomplishments thus far and are excited to have him continue his career at the pro level with Real Salt Lake.”
Herrera, 20, was a standout with the RSL Academy for three years, twice reaching the USSDA National Championship. He followed up that success with three seasons at New Mexico, where he totaled seven goals and eight assists in 54 matches, 53 of them as a starter. The right back led the Lobos in scoring during his junior season in 2017 with five goals and five assists. That highlighted a banner year for Herrera after he started in five matches to help the U.S. U-20 National Team win the CONCACAF U-20 Championship for the first time and advance to the quarterfinal round of the 2017 FIFA U-20 World Cup in South Korea.
He was one of five RSL Academy products to appear for the U.S. in the World Cup, joining DF Danilo Acosta, DF Justen Glad, FW Brooks Lennon and MF Sebastian Saucedo.
He will bring RSL’s list of Academy products on the current roster to seven, along with Acosta, Glad, Lennon, Saucedo, FW Jordan Allen and MF Jose Hernandez. Other former Homegrown signings include Nico Muniz, Donny Toia, Lalo Fernandez, Benji Lopez, Phanuel Kavita, Fito Ovalle and Ricardo Velazco.