HERRIMAN — Amy Rodriguez has donned many jerseys in her 15 combined years of college, pro and international soccer, and the joy of getting a new jersey still never gets old.
It’s why Rodriguez was excited to take part in the Utah Royals’ new jersey unveiling hosted by owner Dell Loy Hansen at Soleil Lofts in Herriman across the street from the Real Salt Lake Academy.
The majority of the Royals players were attendance at the ceremony to unveil Soleil Energy as the new jersey front partner in year 3 of the club.
“This is probably one of my favorite jerseys I’ve ever donned, just cause it’s so unique and very picturesque considering we are from Salt Lake City. Very happy to wear this jersey proud and can’t wait to play in it.” — Utah Royals’ Amy Rodriguez
“This is probably one of my favorite jerseys I’ve ever donned, just cause it’s so unique and very picturesque considering we are from Salt Lake City. Very happy to wear this jersey proud and can’t wait to play in it,” said Rodriguez.
The new Nike home kit features a dark blue jersey and gold shorts, with a mountain landscape featured prominently on the front of the jersey.
“I love it, I looked at those mountains when I first saw that, and I thought that is so Utah,” said Hansen. “We already have in the crest the arch, and now we have the mountains, and then Soleil Energy is something that is not dishwasher soap. I mean that sincerely, it is something that I think is an important element that we want to broadcast, we’re committed to sustainable energy to sustain life.”
The 2020 jersey is a flip from the previous two years when gold was the primary color of the home kit with dark blue shorts.
Soleil Energy becomes the Royals’ second jersey front sponsor, replacing Logan-based Conservice.
The Utah Royals will get their first chance to show off the jersey for fans in two weeks when the NWSL Challenge Cup kicks off in Herriman. The remaining eight NWSL teams will converge on Utah beginning next week for the monthlong tournament from June 27 to July 26.
The Royals’ first game is set for June 30 against the Washington Spirit at 10:30 a.m. All 25 games of the Challenge Cup will be played behind closed doors without fans at Zions Bank Stadium in Herriman, with the semifinals and final being played at Rio Tinto Stadium.
Hansen praised the efforts of the Utah Sports Commission, Gov. Gary Herbert and the Utah Health Department in helping make the tournament happen in Utah.
Rodriguez said those involved with URFC and NWSL have done a great job making the players feel comfortable with the precautions taken for the tournament. She’s communicated that to players around the league when they’ve inquired about what the tournament will look like in Utah.
“I’ve assured them that our organization is doing the very best possible to ensure that they’re going to be safe and comfortable. The RSL and URFC organization have done a great job preparing this facility to make sure all players are safe,” said Rodriguez.
Rodriguez acknowledged that with the shortened preseason for all teams, the importance of finding team chemistry quickly is extremely important.
“We’re kind of having to rush that this year, and I’m hoping the Royals can hit the ground running this year and get after it. It definitely will be a unique year for us for sure,” said Rodriguez.