Robbie Rogers is officially a member of the LA Galaxy, a move that makes him the first openly gay man to play for a team in top-tier American professional sports.
The trade between the LA Galaxy and Chicago Fire both allows Rogers to play professionally near his family and hometown, but as players such as Omar Gonzalez told the press, also allows LA’s Mike Magee to return home to his birthplace of Chicago.
Throughout the event, Rogers both acknowledged the historic step he’s taking while also expressing that this is as much about wanting to get back to the sport he loves as being a role model. He told reporters, “My number one goal was to come back and compete and play soccer and I know that by doing that I’m also being that role model you can say or that spokesperson. It makes it easy for me to play a sport I love and to do that.”
He also addressed soccer fans who may not like him for his sexuality by saying he’d like to give such people a hug and that he would welcome a conversation with Sheik Monsour, part owner of the newly announced NYCFC and Deputy Prime Minister of a nation with a terrible track record on human rights.
We’ll continue to have coverage of Robbie Rogers’ return to soccer throughout the weekend, including more quotes from Rogers, Bruce Arena, and his new teammates. We’ll also be live at what will potentially be his first match tomorrow night.
Robbie Rogers to become first out Major League Soccer player, first out man to ever play in any top soccer league.
First reported at in a story on the USA Today website (and spotted by Taylor Twellman), multiple anonymous sources have said that the deal has been done for Robbie Rogers to return to Major League Soccer, playing for the LA Galaxy.
Steven Goff of the Washington Post is hearing the same:
Unconfirmed but hearing Galaxy sending Mike Magee to Fire for rights to Robbie Rogers. Awaiting final word. #mls
— Steven Goff (@SoccerInsider) May 25, 2013
It’s happening, 2nd source says: Magee for Rogers, straight up #mls
— Steven Goff (@SoccerInsider) May 25, 2013
Gay4soccer.com also has a source confirming this trade.
More as the story develops…
Last night Rogers attended the Los Angeles premiere of the film Now You See Me, an upcoming release about magicians who pull off bank robberies. He posted this pre-red carpet picture to his Instagram account.
More news also came out yesterday about the negotiations between the Chicago Fire and LA Galaxy over Robbie Rogers’ playing rights. LA Galaxy Confidential reports that the Fire is aiming high right now, asking that Rogers’ rights be traded for Mike Magee, who has come to be known as “Mr. November” for coming through in the clutch for LA scoring key goals at playoffs time. Needless to say, the swap isn’t likely.
We head north today to recruit Allies List members from our second Cascadia and second Canadian team this month, the Vancouver Whitecaps.
Vancouver defenders Jay DeMerit and Jordan Harvey participated in the NOH8 Campaign when they visited last year and five others joined with us last season: Joe Cannon, Brad Knighton, Alain Rochat, Omar Salgado, and Matt Watson.
Six current Real Salt Lake players are on the Allies List: Rich Balchan, Tony Beltran, Eduardo Fernández, Lovel Palmer, Sebastian Velasquez, and Chris Wingert. Wingert and RSL alumnus Brian Dunseth both took part in Salt Lake’s first-ever NO H8 Campaign photo shoot.
Will another MLS captain join them? How about a US Men’s National team goalkeeper? Help us ask the players who use social media to join the list by tweeting at us or using the hashtag #soccerally.
Are you getting tired of waiting while the LA Galaxy and Chicago Fire negotiate over Robbie Rogers’ rights? I am, and hereby begin obsessive coverage of Robbie Rogers Watch 2013.
We begin with this past weekend when Rogers attended the 2013 Voice Award put on by the Gay Men’s Chorus of Los Angeles. Naturally, he was asked about his playing future when he walked the red carpet.
He told Gay Star News:
‘I told them I want to stay here with my family,’ he said. ‘It’s very important to me right now that I’m around my family and friends. Hopefully it works out. I think it should, it should be sorted out in the next few weeks.’
The next few weeks? Here’s hoping.
For the rest of the month we’re hitting teams that already have six or more allies, like the Houston Dynamo. Can those at the top add even more?
Houston has one of the first players on our list, Mike Chabala who was the first soccer pro to pose for the NOH8 Campaign and part of the first MLS You Can Play video. Corey Ashe, Calen Carr, Brian Ching, Warren Creavalle, and Alex Dixon all signed onto the list last season.
Let’s get the players to join them. Ask them on Twitter and have them mention us or the #soccerally hashtag to show their support.
NYCFC as Major League Soccer’s 20th team may be the news of the day, but we push ahead with the Columbus Crew as our 12th team for ally recruitment.
Last May, four current Crew players signed onto our Allies List. Chad Marshall, Aaron Schoenfeld, Konrad Warzycha, and Josh Williams all responded to fans and us on Twitter to join the cause.
It was great to see Seattle fans get involved yesterday and recruiting players so let’s work together again today. Use the list below to ask players to join by tweeting at us or using the #soccerally hashtag.
Supporters groups in Cascadia marked Friday’s International Day Against Homophobia with displays in the stands Saturday in Vancouver and Seattle.
Two weeks down and two to go with over two dozen players added to our Allies List. We begin week three with the Seattle Sounders.
The Sounders currently have three players on the list who all joined when asked at this time last year: David Estrada, Brad Evans, and Eddie Johnson.
As we ask players from our first Cascadia team in this campaign to sign on, who will join them? Help ask players using the list below, and we’ll be both looking out for mentions of us on Twitter and tweets using the #soccerally hashtag.