Even if you’re not a soccer fan, you probably caught the news that Robbie Rogers signed for the LA Galaxy yesterday. In doing so, the former US International is poised to become the first openly gay male athlete in North America to compete in a professional sport. (Although NBA veteran Jason Collins also came out recently, he is currently a free agent).
Now comes the news that the Galaxy has received Rogers International Transfer Certificate, meaning he is eligible to play in tonight’s game against the Seattle Sounders. Galaxy coach Bruce Arena has said multiple times he would include Rogers in his gameday roster if available.
So Sounders fans, how does having Robbie Rogers available affect tonight’s matchup? Read on to find out.
Rogers plays as a winger or a wide midfielder and loves to use his speed to beat defenders. During a five-year stint with the Columbus Crew, Rogers resisted 13 goals and 16 assists in 106 appearances and also managed 18 caps (appearances) and two goals with the US National Team. While the talent is clearly there, Rogers has a reputation as an inconsistent player. He’s just as likely to be unplayable as he is to disappear for 90 minutes.
Although Rogers has been training with the Galaxy for several weeks now, he hasn’t seen game action in a while so it’s a safe bet he starts on the bench against the Sounders. As a late game sub, however, Rogers could cause some problems with his speed against tired legs.
Bottom line: In my opinion, Rogers won’t be the difference against the Sounders and Seattle shouldn’t be most concerned with him. LA was the MLS Cup favorite before this signing because of Landon Donovan, Robbie Keane and Omar Gonzalez. If Seattle can shut down Keane and Donovan (easier said than done) the Rave Green will leave Southern California with at least a point.