Robbie Rogers trains with the LA Galaxy
CARSON, CALIFORNIA (BDCi) — LA Galaxy players and coaches were highly supportive of Robbie Rogers when he revealed two months ago that he is gay and nothing has changed in that regard as the 25-year-old returned to the training field Tuesday.
Rogers, who stepped away from the sport after making his announcement in mid-February, worked out with the two-time defending MLS Cup champions and Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena said it was “open-ended” what the future holds for the former Columbus Crew standout in Southern California. The Chicago Fire hold his MLS rights, meaning a team would have to work out a trade with the Fire in order to add the winger to their roster.
“He looked a lot sharper than I thought he would today,” said Arena, who added he’s been in contact with Rogers for some time. “Given the fact he’s been away from the game for a while.”
The timing of Rogers’ appearance Tuesday was interesting, especially after Monday’s news that NBA player Jason Collins, via a national magazine said he was gay.
Rogers was not available for comment, but Galaxy players were positive in their praise for the striker/winger who made 18 appearances for the U.S. National team while also spending time in Holland and England. Rogers also won an MLS Cup with the Columbus Crew in 2008.
“I think it’s great,” said Mike Magee, who added he has known Rogers for 10 years. “It’s good to see him overcome some barriers and just get back on the field. I think everyone hoped he would. We’re pretty certain we will see him on the field one day, hopefully here.’
“Just to see him kind of stepping out and hang with guys and doing things he didn’t think he could do before and how easy it is for him, it’s good to see.”
Magee said he talked to Rogers after Tuesday’s training session and Rogers told Magee he felt “like an old man.”
“I told him, I know how he feels,” said Magee, who turns 29 in September.