Former Major League Soccer and U.S. national team member Robbie Rogers announced on his personal blog that he is gay and that he is leaving the sport temporarily.
Rogers, 25, wrote, according to multiple media outlets: "For the past 25 years, I have been afraid, afraid to show whom I really was because of fear. Fear that judgement and rejection would hold me back from my dreams and aspirations. Fear that my loved ones would be farthest from me if they knew my secret. Fear that my secret would get in the way of my dreams. [...]
"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. Try convincing yourself that your creator has the most wonderful purpose for you even though you were taught differently."
He also said he will take some time off from soccer after being released by Leeds last month.
Last week, the Chicago Fire acquired the rights to Rogers should he decide to return to MLS.