LI Native Wingert Lands Back With Real Salt Lake

Screen Shot 2016-02-03 at 10.38.30 AMIn 2015, Long Island native Chris Wingert went home to ply his trade at Yankee Stadium for Major League Soccer expansion side New York City FC.

Now, a year later and just days after being waived by NYCFC, Wingert is heading back to his second home. The defenseman was signed by Real Salt Lake, a team for which he spent eight years with.

Salt Lake Head Coach Jeff Cassar told the Salt Lake Tribune that having Wingert back at Rio Tinto Stadium will give his team added depth. “He makes the team better by the way he trains and the way he prepares for games. I think it’s going to be a huge piece for us.”

Wingert joined New York after be taken in the expansion draft prior to the 2015 season. He appeared in 27 matches, with 26 starts. His return to Utah had some help from teammate Kyle Beckerman, who reportedly played a key role in Wingert’s return. The two have played together since they were teenagers as members of the U.S. Olympic Development Program.

On his Instagram account, Wingert posted a photo of him wearing a Real Salt Lake with the message, “What an emotional 48 hours. I’m currently on a flight out to SLC to get to my second home and celebrate the life of one of my closest friends. Fortunately I only bought a one way trip cause it sounds like I’m gonna be staying a while.”

In addition, Wingert thanked NYCFC and the team’s fans for the support from both during the 2015 season. “It was an absolute dream come true for a proud New Yorker like myself to play in front of sold out crowds at Yankee Stadium,” he wrote.