Los Angeles Galaxy winger Robbie Rogers, who came out as gay earlier this year, has suffered another setback in his return to Major League Soccer, injuring his hamstring again in last night's match. The Galaxy beat CS Cartagines, 2-0.
Rogers had already been struggling on the pitch. He was left off the team's 18-man roster by head coach Bruce Arenas for the two previous MLS games. The snub by Arenas led associate head coach Dave Sarachan to send this clear statement to Rogers through the media:
"We've built a strong roster, and there's competition, and some guys have sort of moved up the ladder a little bit," Sarachan said. "Robbie is moving, maybe not quite to the speed we and he would feel comfortable with ... Robbie, he knows that everything needs to improve a little bit - speed, speed of play, the ability to get at players, getting crosses in - and it's a work in progress. We're confident Robbie will get there."
Rogers had spent part of July on the sideline with a previous hamstring injury. Reports today point to a recovery time for Rogers of weeks. Rogers talked to MLSsoccer.com:
"It's really frustrating," he said. "And, obviously, things happen for a reason, but sometimes you ask, 'What's the lesson in this?' I don't know, just going to keep my head up, and hopefully the MRI isn't too bad and I can continue training and do fitness and stuff like that.
"I don't think I'll be out too long. I think maybe a few weeks."
Rogers was dogged by injury throughout his English soccer career. He came back to MLS earlier this year and was dealt to the Galaxy in a one-for-one trade with the Chicago Fire, who acquired forward Mike Magee. Magee leads the League in goals.
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Major League Soccer has a partnership with the You Can Play project to tackle homophobia in the League.