Luke Rodgers rips Galaxy star
(by Mike Mazzeo espn.go.com 5-9-11)
New York Red Bulls striker Luke Rodgers doesn't like Los Angeles Galaxy star Landon Donovan.
He made that very clear to the New York Post on Monday.
"In this league, he's a respected person, but he's telling Titi [Thierry Henry] to [screw] off. The kid's a [expletive] head," Rodgers, who was clearly upset at Donovan after the Red Bulls and Galaxy completed a 1-1 draw on Saturday night in L.A., told the Post. "I don't care. I just think the kid's a [expletive] jerk. I don't care what you put.
"After Henry scored he's running the whole length of the pitch to shout at the linesman. He must have eyes like a hawk to tell if he's offsides. I tackled the keeper [and] he's running the whole length of the field to tell the ref I should be sent off. He needs to be a bit more humble.''
Donovan responded to Rodgers' profanity laced tirade via Twitter: "I'm confused; who is Luke Rogers?"
Rodgers became enraged at Donovan after he saw the U.S. National Team sensation complain to the referees throughout the match.
"I just think he talks too much. You don't need to,'' Rodgers told the newspaper. "Put it this way, someone like him, he's done OK for himself, played in MLS, scored a lot of goals, he's in All-Star teams, played in the Premiership and I know people in the Premiership who say he's done really well when he was there. You've got people looking up to him, and he's trying to get people sent off."
"[Donovan] is telling linemen off, shouting at referees. Is it one rule for him and one rule for the rest of us? He needs to be a bit more humble,'' Rodgers continued. "He's just a bit annoying. Just a bit annoying when it's like you've got two referees on the pitch. He's running up to the referees telling him what decisions make. I've never ever seen nothing like that.''
Rodgers, who previously played professionally in his native England, has three goals and one assist in five games for the Eastern Conference leading Red Bulls (4-1-3).
According to the Post, the 29-year-old Rodgers has been known to be a controversial figure. He was involved in several drunken bar fights, and once "accidentally wounded a teenage girl with fireworks."
The Post indicated that the fireworks incident was the reason Rodgers wasn't allowed to come to the U.S. to play for the Red Bulls last summer, but Red Bulls coach Hans Backe "was insistent, and eventually pushed his visa through to acquire him this winter."
Comment by The Cup
Luke Rodgers has officially become my favorite MLS player.
Welcome to the RSL Cup blog
I've been a fan of Real Salt Lake since it joined MLS and took to the field in 2005, and I've been a fan of MLS since it began in 1996. Lately however I've started to worry about the path MLS is taking and the poor decisions they are making that in my mind threaten the growth of soccer as a whole in the US. (see "Columbus conspiracy" section) Soccer in America will grow only when we have a vibrant and diverse minor league system, something that MLS seems to be smothering at the moment. (see "American soccer wars" section) Let's keep our eyes on the situation and hope for the best, a future where grass-roots soccer and the minor leagues can not only exist but flourish, as well as where the contributions and history of the league's early clubs are appreciated and preserved.