Robbie Rogers became the first openly gay man to be an active player on an American sports team when he came on as a substitute for the LA Galaxy in a 4-0 win over the Seattle Sounders.
The Galaxy acquired the rights to Rogers, who had been training with the team for a month, from the Chicago Fire earlier in the week via a trade for Mike Magee.
In February, Rogers stepped away from professional soccer after announcing his sexuality in a blog post. He had not played since Dec. 8, 2012 before seeing out the final quarter hour on Sunday night.
LA scored early an often. After a dozen minutes, Robbie Keane played a one-two with Marcelo Sarvas to edge his way to the endline. He cut the ball across goal, leaving Sean Franklin a simple tap in for Franklin's first regular season goal since Sept. 5, 2011.
Another dozen minutes later Keane scored his first. Landon Donovan bent a cross into the box after a corner, and the ball bounced off Omar Gonzalez's shoulder and Brad Evans before falling invitingly for Keane. The Irish striker dispatched coolly.
A pair of penalties gave Keane his first MLS hat trick. For the first, Djimi Traore scythed down Gyasi Zardes. Michael Gspurning saved Keane's first attempt, but the referee whistled for goalkeeper encroachment and Keane calmly hit the second attempt the other direction.
A few minutes before half Zardes skipped down the inside channel and cut the ball back for Juninho. Evans slid in from behind to prevent a shot, picking up a yellow and conceding a penalty for his troubles. Keane had no issues scoring this time, completing the second fastest hat trick in Galaxy history.
Robbie Rogers entered for Juninho in the 77th minute.
Shalrie Joseph was ejected with three minutes remaining in regulation time.
In the last match as the Home Depot Center (the name changes June 19), a crowd of 24,811 watched history.
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- Sports & Recreation
- Robbie Keane
- Robbie Rogers
- LA Galaxy