By IVES GALARCEP
The Los Angeles Galaxy introduced Robbie Rogers to the media on Saturday, after announcing the completion of their trade with the Chicago Fire for Mike Magee.
The deal completes weeks of negotiations between the Galaxy and Fire for the rights to Rogers, who signed his deal with MLS on Friday to pave the way for the trade that sent Magee to his hometown of Chicago.
“I’d like to thank everyone at Major League Soccer, the LA Galaxy and the Chicago Fire for allowing me to return to playing the game that I love,” Rogers said. “I look forward to getting back out onto the field and continuing my soccer career as a member of the Galaxy.”
“We are pleased to be able to add a player of Robbie’s qualities to our roster and feel that he will help improve our team now and in the future,” Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena said. “It is also important to recognize Mike Magee and all of his accomplishments with our club. What he and his teammates have achieved over the past four years has been remarkable and we wish nothing but the best to him and his family as they begin this next chapter of their lives.”
The Fire add a proven goal scorer in Magee, who will be expected to help a struggling Chicago attack, while also giving the team a home-town hero to market.
“To add someone of Mike’s caliber to the Fire roster is tremendous,” said Javier Leon, Fire president of soccer operations. “Mike is a proven offensive threat and to have him on our roster is a great opportunity for the Fire. He’s a Chicago guy, and we know he’s just as excited to come back home as we are to have him join the Club.”
According to several Galaxy players, the impetus for Magee’s departure was due in part to his desire to return to his hometown of Chicago.
The Galaxy’s interest in Rogers has gone back a long time, with sources telling SBI back in February that the Fire were aware of the Galaxy’s interest in Rogers when the Fire acquired Rogers’ rights in their trade with the Columbus Crew that sent Dominic Oduro to the Crew for Dilly Duka and the rights to Rogers.
Rogers could be available for the Galaxy’s match on Sunday against the Seattle Sounders if the team receives his international transfer certificate in time.
It remains unclear when Magee will make his debut for the Fire. He had missed the past few Galaxy games with an undisclosed injury.
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