Jurgen Klinsmann: "Open door" for LA Galaxy defender Robbie Rogers to return to the U.S. National Team
Jurgen Klinsmann’s decision to call-up a heaping of Under-23 eligible players may have been the reason that LA Galaxy left back Robbie Rogers was not on the U.S. National Team’s January camp roster, but the USMNT boss insists that the door is open for the LA defender to return to the U.S. fold.
Following a stellar 2014 season that saw Rogers rejuvenate his career with a move to left back, the 27-year-old was considered a frontrunner to earn a call-up for the annual January camp at StubHub Center. However with Klinsmann calling 11 players who are age-eligible for the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janiero, Klinsmann said that Rogers could not make the cut.
“There was a thought about Robbie,” Klinsmann told reporters on Wednesday. “He had a good season, also, obviously, a winning season. The situation is just, and this is what this kind of camp ended up with was: How can we develop the maximum amount of Olympic team players at the same time? If it was purely senior guys, Robbie would be in that camp.”
Rogers was an Olympian himself the last time U.S. qualified back in 2008 and has complied 18 appearances for the senior team, which included making the 30-man preliminary roster ahead of the 2010 FIFA World Cup. Although Klinsmann did not room for Rogers this January, the U.S. head coach provided assurances that the LA Galaxy player remains on his radar -- possibly for this summer's CONCACAF Gold Cup.
“I said, 'Ah, it's a pity not to give that guy that a chance,'” Klinsmann said. “On the other side, we said, 'You know what, it is important to have 12, 13 Olympic team players in here, because we've got to build them. The sooner the better.’ And that's why some players were left out, and Robbie was one of them. But there's always definitely an open door.”
CARSON, Calif. – No member of the LA Galaxy showed more growth and progress in 2015 than outside back Robbie Rogers.
In 2013, Rogers struggled with injuries en route to a disappointing season while also dealing with the scrutiny of being the first openly gay professional athlete in a major American sport. A year later, the story was far different for the 26-year-old as Rogers settled into a new role as the club’s left back amid injuries to veteran options Todd Dunivant and James Riley. At the end of the season, Rogers solidified himself as one of the finest left backs in MLS as he was a vital part in the LA Galaxy’s MLS Cup winning squad with 24 appearances in all MLS competitions with three assists.
As important as 2014 was for the defender, 2015 could be even bigger for Rogers as he looks to not further his development as an outside back, but also continue his push for a place on the U.S. National Team. With Jurgen Klinsmann’s squad needing depth at left back ahead of the 2015 CONCACAF Gold Cup in light of DaMarcus Beasley’s international retirement, Rogers may find a spot in the USMNT’s depth chart.
How would you rate Robbie Rogers' 2014 performance? Read my review of the LA Galaxy defenders while voting and commenting below.
Fresh off winning his second MLS Cup championship, Robbie Rogers is in the middle of a book tour for his autobiography "Coming Out to Play."
In an interview with the Huffington Post, Rogers talks about his new book and about his experiences with the Galaxy. In particular, Rogers discusses about the importance of retired LA Galaxy star Landon Donovan to his career and to his career since coming out.
Rogers' tour returns to Southern California on Dec. 13 at CostCo in Los Angeles and Book Soup in West Hollywood on Dec. 15.
Omar Gonzalez among three LA Galaxy players on yellow card watch heading into Seattle Sounders FC match
CARSON, Calif. – The LA Galaxy are heading into their Western Conference Championship series with Seattle Sounders FC with a boatload of confidence after the way that they dispatched Real Salt Lake, but three players will need to be cautious heading into the first leg.
Landon Donovan, Robbie Rogers, and Omar Gonzalez are both on yellow card watch heading into Sunday’s first leg. Should either of the three earn a caution from referee Kevin Stott, they will miss out on next week’s second leg at CenturyLink Field. It bears mentioning, however, that no player can be suspended for MLS Cup based on yellow card accumulation.
While Donovan and Rogers are at risk, Gonzalez faces a particular challenge as he looks to avoid a yellow card and mark dynamic strikers Obafemi Martins and Clint Dempsey.
“I have to be very smart with how I defend and how aggressive I am,” said Gonzalez. “But having said that, I have to leave it all on the field and not worry about the referees or about anything out of my control. I have to worry about how I show up, how I approach the game and how focused I am over 90 minutes."
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.
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. – A year ago this week, the LA Galaxy saw their “Quest for Three” consecutive MLS Cups fall short against Real Salt Lake at Rio Tinto Stadium. This Sunday, it will be Salt Lake traveling to StubHub Center with the chance to eliminate the Galaxy from the postseason and prevent them from being the “First to Five” MLS Cup titles.
Salt Lake simply need a draw in which goals are scored or a victory to end LA’s postseason dreams while the Galaxy need a win or a penalty kick shootout victory to advance.
A year ago, it was the Galaxy who needed a win or a draw in which goals were scored to go through after winning the first leg at StubHub Center 1-0 on a Sean Franklin screamer from distance. However, in the windy Utah conditions, the Galaxy found themselves overmatched as the Claret-and-Cobalt found goals from Sebastian Velasquez and Chris Schuler to defeat LA after 120 minutes.
Although the Galaxy find themselves in a similar situation against Salt Lake, Robbie Keane believes LA are stronger than the team that crashed out of the playoffs a year ago.
“We’re certainly in better position than last year in terms of the players that we have this year,” said Keane. “We have more experienced players and the players that we had last year are a year old and a year better. In terms of that, we’re good with the experience that we have.”
Added Robbie Rogers, “It does feel different. We went on the road last year and I think that there is a little more excitement when you’re in front of your home fans and while we were all up for it in Salt Lake, we know our record at home and what type of attractive soccer that we can play here. We just want to take them out of their comfort zone and show we can perform at home.”
While Keane and Rogers admitted that the team feels different than the one that failed to advance, Marcelo Sarvas disagreed, but noted that LA’s experience could tip the balance on Sunday.
“Every year is different and you can’t compare teams because they have different players who are in different moments,” said Sarvas. “But we have been through this before. We know how it is to play against Salt Lake…Now we’re at our home and we’re going to go for goals and go to win the game.”
CARSON, Calif. -- The LA Galaxy defense has been riddled with injuries as of late, but according to head coach Bruce Arena, LA may welcome back one -- or possibly two -- member of their walking wounded back to the lineup during Sunday's game against FC Dallas.
Right back Dan Gargan missed out on Saturday's game due to a left ankle sprain while Robbie Rogers suffered a left hamstring injury that forced him from the early stages of the victory over Toronto. Both players took part in portions of the Galaxy's training session on Tuesday and according to Arena, both are working their way back onto the field.
"They're doing fine. Their issues are very much short term," said Arena who said that he anticipated that one of them to be ready on Sunday. "We'll have to go into the week and see. It's only Tuesday right now."