LA Galaxy defender Robbie Rogers made American sports history a year ago when he became the first athlete in a major professional sport to come out as a gay man.
The announcement led to considerable scrutiny and media pressure in his difficult first season with the club, but now a year later, things have changed consdierably. Rogers has solidified himself as one of the top left backs in MLS and on Thursday, he was rewarded with a new multi-year contract extension by the Galaxy.
As his professional life has come together, Rogers' has personal life has flourished as well as the 27-year-old will be releasing his biography "Coming Out to Play." on Nov. 25. On Thursday, Rogers celebrated the book's release with a private event in West Hollywood.
"It was an amazing event and I'm so happy to see the support from everyone," Rogers said.
Photos of the event are below.
CARSON, Calif. -- Robbie Rogers is staying with the LA Galaxy for the long run.
The Galaxy announced on Thursday that the team has signed Rogers to a new multi-year contract extension. Per club and league rules, the details of the contact were not released. After a frustrating 2013 season with the Galaxy, Rogers has found new life in 2014 as a left back, making 19 appearances and 15 starts for LA.
A.J. DeLaGarza's Guam defeats Chinese Taipei in 2015 EAFF East Asian Cup preliminary round semifinal
LA Galaxy center back A.J. DeLaGarza started and went 90 minutes as Guam defeated host nation Chinese Taipei (Taiwan) 2-1 in their 2015 EAFF East Asian Cup preliminary round two match.
A penalty kick goal by former Santa Clara soccer star Jason Cunliffe in the 14th minute gave Matao an early advantage that was doubled just three minutes before half time when Shane Malcolm scored. Chen Hao-wei scored for Chinese Taipei in the 57th minute, but the DeLaGarza-led Guam defense held firm to prevent a comeback.
Guam will take on group stage favorite North Korea on Sunday in a match that will likely decide which team advances to the 2015 EAFF East Asian Cup. North Korea started the qualifying group off on a high note on Thursday with a 2-1 victory over Hong Kong.
View from Seattle Sounders FC: Seattle expect Osvaldo Alonso back from injury in time for LA Galaxy series
Seattle Sounders FC midfielder Osvaldo Alonso was forced to exit Seattle’s scoreless draw with FC Dallas with a hamstring strain, but despite the injury, the Sounders are confident that their midfield engine will be back in time for the Western Conference Championship series with the LA Galaxy.
The injury came in the 56th minute when Alonso crumbled to the ground, clutching his leg after a seemingly harmless play in midfield. Minutes later, the Cuban midfielder was removed and replaced by Micheal Azira.
According to reports out of Seattle, Sounders FC head coach Sigi Schmid noted that Alonso is unlikely to train for the remainder of the week, but should be back in time for the first leg of the Western Conference Championship at StubHub Center on Nov. 23.
"We'll know more as we move forward each day," Schmid told reporters after practice on Tuesday. "But our expectation is that he'll be able to make it back for the game in LA. We'll go through the protocol and obviously the rest of this week we're going to keep him off the field, try to get the treatment in and hopefully back on the field next week."
CARSON, Calif. –A right hamstring strain forced Leonardo to make an early exit during the LA Galaxy’s 5-0 victory over Real Salt Lake, but the club’s coaching staff are confident that the Brazilian could be back in time to play a role in their Western Conference Championship clash with Seattle Sounders FC.
Leonardo went down in the 37th minute, forcing third-year defender Tommy Meyer to come on for the remainder of last Sunday's game. Although the injury was severe enough that the Brazilian center back needed to be stretchered off the field, the Galaxy coaching staff believe that the time in between series will allow ample time for Leonardo to return to fitness.
“Two weeks is good for both teams certainly and we would think that both teams are going to be healthy when they meet at StubHub Center,” said Bruce Arena. “He’s working [to get back to full fitness] so we’ll see.”
Added Associate head coach Dave Sarachan, “Two weeks [between games] is a good thing for a guy like him, but we’ll know more as we get through the next few days. I think there is a good chance that he would be back for the series, be it game one or game two.”
Real Salt Lake traveled more than a hundred fans to their Western Conference Semifinal second leg against the LA Galaxy, but the Utahns were forced to drive back in sadness after their 5-0 thumping to LA.
Thanks to StubHub Center photo application FanPics, the depression of the Salt Lake fans and the joy of the Galaxy was captured after each LA goal.
As they say, a "a picture is worth a thousand words" so check out the RSL fans below.
ACB reacting to each goal:
CARSON, Calif. -- It had to come down to this.
The LA Galaxy's old foe, Seattle Sounders FC will stand in-between LA and another trip to the MLS Cup after the Sounders advanced past FC Dallas on Monday. Fresh off their own triumph over Real Salt Lake that saw LA hang five goals on the Claret-and-Cobalt, the Galaxy returned to training on Tuesday with the Sounders in mind.
"We were hoping for this as well. It's going to be a very good series and be very similar to what we saw a couple weeks back. May the better team win," said forward Alan Gordon. "We're focused and we want to put in a good performance against a good team."
But after the Sounders won the Supporters' Shield by defeating the Galaxy last month is there a need for LA to exact any revenge?
"We never approach games like it's revenge," said head coach Bruce Arena. "That's child psychology. We go out to play hard and win regardless of who we're playing."
LA Galaxy issue warning to FC Dallas/Seattle Sounders FC series winner ahead of Western Conference Finals
CARSON, Calif. – The LA Galaxy advanced to the Western Conference Finals for the fifth time in six years on Sunday with their 5-0 victory over Real Salt Lake, but their opponent in that series remains a mystery.
LA will play the winner of the FC Dallas/Seattle Sounders FC series which will be decided on Monday at CenturyLink Field. Seattle need only a victory or a scoreless draw to advance while FC Dallas must defeat the Supporters’ Shield winners or earn a high scoring draw.
Both teams gave the Galaxy all they could handle in the regular season with LA winning the season series with Dallas 2-1-0 while splitting their three matches with Seattle 1-1-1. Given those records, is there a preference for the Galaxy as they seek to qualify for a third MLS Cup in four seasons?
Not at all.
“Between Seattle and Dallas, they gave us a lot of problems during the season so we’ll watch the game very closely tomorrow,” said hat trick hero Landon Donovan. “We’ll be sure to get proper rest this week and we’ll be ready to go.”
Even though the Galaxy had struggled results wise with a four game winless streak prior to their explosion on Sunday, LA believe their clicking at the right time as they look to their next opponent.
“I know that we haven’t had good results, but even against Seattle we had moments that were very good. We did break down at the end, but they sat back and defended against us in Seattle, which is weird,” said Robbie Rogers. “We’re confident in whomever we play be it Seattle or Dallas that we can compete.
“I think that anyone has to come into a stadium where the last team lost 5-0, they know it’s going to be difficult, but it is the playoffs so anyone can win.”
But Stefan Ishizaki, who shined in his start against Salt Lake, offered the tersest message to LA’s future opponents.
CARSON, Calif. – Robbie Keane has been hobbled with a hamstring strain for several weeks, but during the LA Galaxy’s 5-0 demolition of Real Salt Lake, you’d have no idea that the club’s dynamic Irishman was carrying a knock.
Keane scored his eighth postseason goal in just his 14th playoff appearance in the Galaxy victory while also adding three assists to bring his career total to six since joining LA in 2011. Even though Keane’s ability to exploit the spaces provided by the Salt Lake defense appeared unhindered, the Irishman admitted after the game that he was in less than stellar condition.
“Honestly, I felt awful before the game,” Keane said. “Bad back for the last two days. Bad hamstring. I wasn't feeling great until the game started moving.”
Once the whistle blew, Keane seemed fit as a fiddle as he assisted on two goals by Landon Donovan as well as Marcelo Sarvas’ lone tally to lift the Galaxy to a comfortable result over the visitors.
“We knew we had to get the first goal. In the first ten minutes, we knew we had to get the first goal. Once we got that, they opened up even more and we got the second one early as well. I think for them then the game was over,” said Keane. “They had to go for goal, so obviously there was a lot of space for us to counterattack and defend well. That's the reason we won the game. We showed intensity from the start to the finish.”
Even though Keane is carrying a number of knocks, there will be little time to rest for the Irishman who will join up with the Republic of Ireland for their upcoming Euro 2016 qualifier against Scotland at Celtic Park in Glasgow on Nov. 14 before playing the U.S. National Team four days later in London.
Keane is scheduled to return to the Galaxy prior to their Western Conference Finals first leg against the winner of the Seattle Sounders FC/FC Dallas series.
CARSON, Calif. -- The LA Galaxy booked their ticket to the Western Conference Finals for the fifth time in six years on Sunday with a 5-0 trouncing of Real Salt Lake in their Western Conference Semifinal second leg.
LA will play the winner of Monday night's match between FC Dallas and Seattle Sounders FC at CenturyLink Field. The match will take place at 7:30 p.m. PT and will air on NBCSN.
Before you pay any attention to that one, however, relive the Galaxy victory through the stunningly awesome photos from the Mora Photography crew.
Check them out below.