Sunday, May 26, 2013

Out Spotlight

Today's Out Spotlight is an American professional soccer player who now plays for Los Angeles Galaxy.  In 2013, he came, becoming the second male footballer in Britain to do so after Justin Fashanu came out in 1990. Today's Out Spotlight is Robbie Rogers.

Robert Hampton "Robbie" Rogers was born May 12, 1987 to Theresa and Robert Hampton Rogers II.  He joined one brother, Timothy, and three sisters, Nicole Camilla, Alicia, and Katie Rose in the Rogers family. His mother's family is originally from the Columbus, Ohio area where Rogers played for Columbus Crew. His maternal grandfather is a graduate of Ohio State University and his mother spent her early childhood years in Dublin, Ohio, before the family moved to California.

Growing up in California, Rogers enjoyed surfing and still surfs when he returns to the United States. He also enjoys playing table tennis and has a strong interest in music. Rogers states that his favourite athlete is Zlatan Ibrahimović.

Rogers started playing soccer at age four-and-a-half at the American Youth Soccer Organization.  By seven, Rogers he soccer in the Coast Soccer league, as well as in various Hispanic leagues. He attended Mater Dei High School in Santa Ana, California, where he was a two-time High School All-American in soccer. Rogers made three appearances for Orange County Blue Star of the USL Premier Development League in 2005, leaving upon deciding to attend university in the fall. He played one season of college soccer at the University of Maryland, alongside his future Columbus Crew teammate Jason Garey, helping lead the team to the 2005 NCAA Championship. During his one season at UMD, he scored seven times and assisted a further five goals. He was also named in the ACC All-Conference Freshman team, as well as the Soccer Rookie Team of the Year.

 Rogers plays as either a winger or as a second striker.

After impressing during his one year of college soccer for Maryland Terrapins, he attracted the interest of Dutch Eredivisie side Heerenveen. In the summer of 2006, Heerenveen invited Rogers to the club for a three-week trial, an option that he ultimately took up. The trial period was successful, and he signed a two-year professional contract with the Dutch side in August 2006, his first professional deal. Rogers admitted that the decision to turn professional, and turn down three remaining years of eligibility at Maryland, was "the toughest of his life", but also stated that it was "an opportunity he could not pass up". However, he failed to make a first-team appearance for the club, although played frequently for the reserve side that went on to win their respective league during the 2006–07 season. He left Heerenveen by mutual consent in February 2007.

Following his release, Rogers returned to the United States, and was subsequently signed by MLS side Columbus Crew ahead of the 2007 MLS season. Columbus Crew acquired Rogers after they had won a Draft Lottery for the player in March 2007. He scored his first goal for the club on June 17, 2007, netting the opening goal of the game in a 3–3 draw away to New England Revolution. Rogers scored two further times during the 2007 campaign, both of which came in a 3–2 victory over DC United at RFK Stadium. He made ten appearances during his first season with Crew, scoring three times and making one assist.

The 2008 season would be Rogers' breakthrough season as a professional. He started the campaign playing regularly for Crew, scoring his first goals of the season in a 4–3 home win over CD Chivas USA on April 13, 2008. He went on to score the winning goal in a 2–1 win against Kansas City Wizards on May 4, 2008, before netting twice a week later as Crew defeated San Jose Earthquakes 3–2 to take their winning streak to five matches. Following his two goals against Earthquakes, he was awarded the MLS Player of the Week award for week seven. His sixth goal of the campaign came in a 3–1 home win against New York Red Bulls at Columbus Crew Stadium in September 2008. He went on to score a further goal in the 2008 MLS Cup Playoffs, scoring the club's second in a 2–0 win over Kansas City Wizards; a win that ensured Crew progressed to the Conference final. Rogers played in all four of Crew's MLS Cup games, including in the final, where they defeated New York Red Bulls 3–1 at The Home Depot Center in November 2008. The season was successful both individually and collectively for Rogers, as he was named in the MLS Best XI team for the year, as well as picking up Supporters' Shield and MLS Cup silverware. He made 33 appearances during the 2008 campaign, scoring seven times, and assisting three goals.

It took Rogers five months to score his first goal of the 2009 season as Crew started the season without a win in seven games.  He eventually netted a goal in a 3–0 win over San Jose Earthquakes at Buck Shaw Stadium on August 9, 2009. It was his only goal of the 2009 MLS season, although he did score two goals in two CONCACAF Champions League matches against Puerto Rico Islanders and Deportivo Saprissa respectively. During the season, Rogers picked up his second Supporters' Shield title after Crew finished first in the overall standings despite their slow start, finishing a point ahead of second placed Los Angeles Galaxy.

During the following season, Rogers' fourth at Columbus Crew, he made 34 appearances and scored twice. His first goal of the campaign came in a 3–2 win over New England Revolution in May 2010, with Rogers' goal coming in the 91st minute of the match. He also netted in a 2–1 win over Colorado Rapids in the MLS Cup Conference semi-final. Despite Rogers' goal, eventual champions Rapids would go on to win the tie 5–4 on penalties after extra-time. Rogers opened his account for the 2011 season in the club's first game of the season, scoring a late consolation penalty as Crew went down 3–1 to DC United. A month later, in April 2011, he scored the only goal of the game in a 1–0 home victory over Sporting Kansas City at Columbus Crew Stadium. It was to be his last goal for the club, in a season where he played 30 times. His last game for the club was in a 1–0 defeat to Colorado Rapids in the MLS Cup wildcard game on October 28, 2011. During his last season with the club, he led the team in assists and was also awarded the 'Crew Hardest Working Player' award. In December 2011, it was announced that Rogers was a free agent after he rejected the offer of a contract extension at Columbus Crew. During his five seasons at Crew, he made 138 appearances and scored 17 times.

After Rogers left Columbus Crew, he  joined Leeds United (UK) on an initial two-week trial period in December 2011, before signing on a permanent basis a month later, in January 2012. Rogers explained his national team coach Jürgen Klinsmann recommended him to then Leeds manager Simon Grayson, who in-turn invited Rogers for a trial. His work permit was granted a week after signing for the club. He made his debut on February 18, 2012, coming as a 79th minute substitute in an eventual 3–2 home win over Doncaster Rovers. However, he had to be substituted just ten minutes into his debut after suffering a severe clash of heads with Doncaster defender Tommy Spurr. The head injury ultimately ruled him out of first-team action for several weeks. He returned  first-team in April 2012, making his first appearance under new manager Neil Warnock —  coming in as an 85th minute substitute in a 2–0 defeat Reading.  A week later, on April 14, he made his first start for the club in a home fixture against Peterborough United. Similarly to his debut, he was substituted after just ten minutes due to sustaining an ankle injury.The ankle injury would ultimately rule him out for the remainder of the season. Rogers made four appearances during the second half of the 2011–12 season, with his first few months at the club blighted by injury.

Ahead of the 2012–13 season, manager Neil Warnock said that he was hopeful Rogers would be able to get a full pre-season under his belt. In June 2012, Rogers returned to the United States to take part in a rehabilitation program, as well as spending two weeks training with the Los Angeles Galaxy squad. He returned to Leeds at the beginning of July 2012, and was featured in a number of the club's pre-season games. Shortly before the start of the new season, on August 9, manager Neil Warnock revealed that Rogers, along with team-mate Danny Pugh, had been placed on the transfer list in order to generate funds for a new striker.

Rogers joined League One side Stevenage on August 23, on a loan deal until January 2013. Stevenage manager Gary Smith, previously manager of MLS side Colorado Rapids, said that Rogers always impressed him during his time managing in the United States.  Rogers made his debut for Stevenage two days after signing, on August 25, coming on as a late substitute in the club's 1–0 away victory against Oldham Athletic. He made nine appearances during his five-month loan, with his time at the club "hampered by injury". He returned to Leeds on January 15, 2013.

A couple of weeks after being released by Leeds United, on February 15, 2013, Rogers announced his retirement from professional soccer at age 25 and announced he was gay, making him the first professional footballer based in Britain to come out since Justin Fashanu did so in 1990.  He announced his retirement and his sexuality with a 408-word post on his personal blog, robbiehrogers.com, writing, "I'm a soccer player, I'm Christian, and I'm gay, Those are things that people might say wouldn't go well together. But my family raised me to be an individual and to stand up for what I believe in."

He went on to say, "Secrets can cause so much internal damage. People love to preach about honesty, how honesty is so plain and simple. Try explaining to your loved ones after 25 years you are gay. I always thought I could hide this secret. Football was my escape, my purpose, my identity. Football hid my secret, gave me more joy than I could have ever imagined".

In a March 2013 interview with The Guardian (UK), Rogers said he retired to avoid the pressure and scrutiny from the press and fans, what he called "the circus". Rogers said, "Are people coming to see you because you're gay? Would I want to do interviews every day, where people are asking: 'So you're taking showers with guys — how's that?'

On May 1, 2013, the day after basketball player Jason Collins became the first active openly gay player in a top U.S. sports league and credited Rogers with having "blazed a trail", Rogers joined Los Angeles Galaxy of Major League Soccer in training as a "special guest". He said he made the decision to return to soccer in April 2013, after speaking in front of a crowd of 500 at an LGBT youth event in Portland, Oregon, during which he "seriously felt like a coward".  He told USA TODAY Sports, "These kids are standing up for themselves and changing the world, and I'm 25, I have a platform and a voice to be a role model. How much of a coward was I to not step up to the plate?" He contacted Galaxy coach Bruce Arena, who extended him an invitation to train in Los Angeles.

On May 24, 2013, Rogers agreed to terms with the LA Galaxy, pending the trade of his MLS rights from Chicago Fire SC in exchange for Mike Magee. Although the Fire held his MLS rights, Rogers had said in a radio interview that he had no intention of playing for Chicago, as he preferred to be close to his family in Southern California.

When the deal is finalized, Rogers would become the first openly gay player to to sign for a major men's professional team in the United States, as Jason Collins is a free agent.

15 comments:

prairiegirl said...

Great Out Spotlight, Special. I really enjoyed that one - I could understand why he retired initially. I imagine Jake and Austin are sick and tired of being scrutinized also. Well, the only thing I can say to that is it is the stuff and nonsense like the virally spread Tues, Thurs, & Sat Soul Cycle regime, 5 months spent doing ride-alongs, moving to NYC to be near the Gyllengaards, Emily Dido romance, the whole Saustin 5-6 yr 'history' and he moved to NC to be near me fairytale, the Marcus Mumford April 24+ annual bromance, the fake DM'ing from Austin's twitter account, etc etc. which overwhelmingly contributes to bringing on the closer scrutiny.

If these two guys would just live under the radar like they are right now, it'd be a different story. But was the staged "NYC bicycle riding" story really necessary in order to have their Memorial Day weekend? Why can't they just go off and have their holiday privately, with no fanfare like other people?

Why does there always have to be this glut of overkill, like that whirlwind Marcus Mumford chronic Monday to Friday bromance around Austin's birthday?

Who are they doing all of this for? I'd love to know. It's surely not for those of us on OMG because I tell you what, they're not moving a tank like this. We're smarter than that.

If they would just live their life without all this wasted energy, wasted travel, wasted money in order to carry out HW PR's hairbrained ideas on how a hetero, swinging single couple of actors should be living when in truth there are a few high chairs and Little Tyke cars thrown in that mix, I tell you what. It would just be so much simpler.

Thank heavens for people like Chris Colfer, Jason Collins, Adam Lambert and Robbie Rogers who are bucking the system.

And I know movie acting is a whole nother ball of wax. And no, I'm not in their shoes at all. I know that. I don't have a clue what Jake and Austin are going through. I'm trying to listen to what Austin has said lately, though. Trying to understand with what little he has tried to convey.

But this NYC bike ride. This kind of stuff is so unnecessary and it's insulting to a person's brain and vision capabilities.

And whereas there was understanding back in 2007-2009 when things were much different and these guys were just trying to start their life together, it's 2013 now. That's 4 years later and kids are walking and talking, going to preschool and kindegarten.

It's truly a real crossroads now and these guys are seriously worrying me.

prairiegirl said...

Cute little wiener dog that Robbie has, too.

Tonight we had a small family reunion with a cousin that I haven't seen for a long, long time. A lot of laughs and just a good time.

You know, some of the best times in our lives are spent around the dining room table. I cannot tell you the endless amount of great, wonderful times I have enjoyed around Mom's (and Dad's when he was alive) dining room table or ours when we've had family over at our place.

After the meal is finished and you're just sitting there talking and talking and talking. Nothing gets accomplished really, no world problems are solved. But you usually are reminiscing or telling stories and it's just the best time. And us cousins get such a kick out of our parents because there were 10 of the kids and they have got the stories. Oh my gosh and they were so poor.

Anyway, I hope that Jake and Austin's kids grow up with a lot of contact with cousins on both sides of the family. I hope that they are given that opportunity for sleepovers and summers spent together and family reunions. Because like I've said before, those bonds that are formed between cousins, they're the next best thing to sibling bonding. Those are bonds which will help them much, much later in their lives when they have to go through tough times.

You can be separated for decades but you will always have that bond and it's as though time has never passed. It's such a huge comfort. And it's readymade, extended family, one of the best supportive and fun kind.

And that is PG's words of "wisdom" for this day. lol

GREAT SPOTLIGHT said...

I could understand why he retired initially. I imagine Jake and Austin are sick and tired of being scrutinized also. Well, the only thing I can say to that is it is the stuff and nonsense like the virally spread Tues, Thurs, & Sat Soul Cycle regime, 5 months spent doing ride-alongs, moving to NYC to be near the Gyllengaards, Emily Dido romance, the whole Saustin 5-6 yr 'history' and he moved to NC to be near me fairytale, the Marcus Mumford April 24+ annual bromance, the fake DM'ing from Austin's twitter account, etc etc. which overwhelmingly contributes to bringing on the closer scrutiny.

^^ Let's not forget being scrutinized endlessly by you and others claiming that they are lying to you then taking it personally(?).
Somehow you seem to forget or should I say, conveniently not point out your scrutiny of their lives. All these things you claim to be the problems they're creating in their lives, i.e. Emily Dido romance, Austin's Twitter account, etc. etc. Just what's it to you?
What is it any business of yours and how does what they are doing effect your Life/World.
Take a deep look.
Word of advice:
When you point the finger at someone else, please realize that 4 more are pointing back at you!

That includes the your thumb.

ps Great Spotlight

prairiegirl said...

Actually, I keep commenting just to hack "old timers" like you off. I keep commenting so that oh, say "old timers" such as yourself can keep hanging around for whatever perplexing reason (oh that's right, the great Out Spotlights), then go running next door and whine about our "narrow road of thinking" and what a bunch of "fascists" we are.

If my words bristle any hair on your person, well......too bad. You may be an "old timer" but you've also become a troll. You're a troll because your sole purpose is to harass and endlessly rant about the same grievances every time you speak.

Again, I'm not going anywhere, I'm not shutting up just because my words irritate somebody. Sorry but you're just going to have to put up with it. And if you don't like it, there are other playgrounds, other kids to go play with.

karma said...

"then go running next door"

Where? WFT is pretty dead, is a ghost town now

Jersey Tom said...

Read about Robbie in The Washington Post yesterday. Such a good thing. Plus wow what a cutie.

prairiegirl said...

Oh, I know. This was like about a month or two ago(give or take, immediately following a very similar spell of personal harassment.

Anyway, after a gorgeous weekend thus far, I began the task of tackling the patio and what happens. It begins to rain, a good soaking rain. **sigh** But a steady rainfall with the patio door open is great writing ambiance.

Remembering our veterans, all who have served for this country, and also remembering all those who have gone before us.

the real m said...

Hi all. Finally heading home so having trouble keeping up with comments. But re the staged bike pics, it was only a week or so ago when this site said Jake was in Ca. Some troll argued vociferously that we were wrong until pictures of Jake in Ca showed up. So their arguments just to argue hold no water here. We've become experts at analysis and spotting subterfuge. Back to normal tomorrow.

Not gonna stop said...

Where? WFT is pretty dead, is a ghost town now

Then start your own blog, if this one doesn't suit you. Stop whining and acting like you're offended all the time. Be the change you want in the world and all that kind of rubish.

Jake is scrutinized because he is constantly lying to the public and force feeding (minus the gag reflex) his fake heterosexuality on everyone. Getting buds like Levine to suggest the only reason people think he's gay is because he did Brokeback Mountain. Or planting stories about his Soul Cycle love connection, his mystery gals, his twitter fauxmance with Minka Kelly. Reese Witherspoon and Taylor Swift were bad enough. But, he just won't stop. As a result, every action, prompts a reaction. In his particular case, that would be derision. I'm kind of old fashioned in that way. I don't much tolerate liars and especially ones who deny who they are and let others fight their battles for them.

Happy Memorial Day said...

^^^ In the words of PG, Sorry that irritates you so much 10:32. How about not following his life or doing something else with your life since this gets under skin. LOL It's really simple

If my words bristle any hair on your person, well......too bad.

Are Jake and Austin's actions causing this for you? ya know, bristled hair? Well.....didn't you say.. Too Bad

Their actions really must get under your skin.
Sorry to hear that. It may pass one day.

prairiegirl said...

It's interesting for me to keep an eye on Zac Efron who, that I can see, really hasn't been doing the bearding thing since Vanessa Hudgens. I'm not sure how he's doing it but he's getting movie roles and he's not doing the flagrant fauxmances. Maybe I've missed seeing them, but I'm also not seeing ridic stories, although he really doesn't need to be walking around constantly sans shirt all the time.

Maybe Tom and Seaweed would disagree though, lol. Not necessarily from Zac Efron but just the whole shirtless thing.

Special K said...

Sorry Not going to Stop I deleted you comment by accident.

Can you repost it?

Not gonna stop said...

No problem. Luckily, I save my comments before I send it. Here you go!

^^^ In the words of PG, Sorry that irritates you so much 10:32. How about not following his life or doing something else with your life since this gets under skin. LOL It's really simple

I could say the same about you, Grumpypants. I happen to have a very full life thank you very much. And, it's an honest one too. It really doesn't take much to point out Jake's nonsense. In fact, I consider him one of my more insignificant past times.

It's fun to not let Mr. Pampers have free reign to sell his lies. Your the one who is here night and day. Defending someone who could care less about you. Let's see the moment I posted you responded within 45 minutes even though you were on here last night and earlier this morning. I think we know who is the obsessed, angry one. The one who needs to get a life. The person who is bat shit crazy when it comes to OMGers. Well, I'm off. Happy Memorial Day, Everyone. Time to go live my life...in the open. Free and breezy.

ITA said...

I don't have a clue what Jake and Austin are going through.

Can't argue with this, lol.

That's 4 years later and kids are walking and talking, going to preschool and kindegarten.

It would be impossible to hide or keep secret a child/children that have reached this age and any parent that would actually do that would be, IMO, irresponsible and emotionally abusive, not to mention mentally unstable. But I'm sure some of the OMGers will be true to form and come up with some creative excuses and rationalizations. I know! They're being homeschooled!

A conformist not a nut said...

It would be impossible to hide or keep secret a child/children that have reached this age and any parent that would actually do that would be, IMO, irresponsible and emotionally abusive, not to mention mentally unstable.


I hope you know that the operative phrase in that statement is: IMO

Remember money buys everything. It's a universal language.

Jake is seen when he wants to be seen. The kids are being raised away from the paps and the spotlight. Just like the press knows who's gay in Hollywood and Washington, D.C. they also know not to print a single word about it. The tabloids are tools of Management, they play the game for access. US Weekly, Just Jared, E!, Access Hollywood, et al. all know how their bread is buttered. Jake and Austin aren't mentally unstable, they are just part of the system. You're looking at the subject as an outsider. They are insiders, going along to get along. They are part of a subculture/pop culture that is bound and determined to keep their clients in the closet. Hopefully, this will change in the future but Jake, like other closeted celebs, is part of the problem. He's not unstable, just a willing accomplice.