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The Socceresq Podcast (Episode 11): Mike Petke versus Real Salt Lake

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RSL Soapbox’s Matt Montgomery lends his expertise.

MLS: Leagues Cup-Tigres UANL at Real Salt Lake Jeff Swinger-USA TODAY Sports

Real Salt Lake finished up the season in impressive fashion, claiming the third seed in the Western Conference for the MLS Cup Playoffs. The finish could be considered all the more impressive, considering the off-field controversies. Mike Petke, the former manager for the team, was fired after it was determined that he used a word that MLS considers a slur toward referees after a match against Tigres of Liga MX in the Leagues Cup.

He was initially suspended for two weeks and ordered to undergo anger management. That suspension was later upgraded to a full termination after Dell Loy Hansen, the owner of Real Salt Lake, was caught on tape discussing the incident, having revealed he was still considering firing Petke, even though the manager was serving his agreed upon suspension. Petke then filed a lawsuit against the team, alleging breach of contract among other causes of action.

I discuss the case with Matt Montgomery of RSL Soapbox, who initially uncovered the Hansen conversation, which is believed to have initiated the about face which led to Petke ultimate demise. I then briefly review the causes of action in the lawsuit and give some initial thoughts on where this could be headed.