Robbie Rogers, who received his work permit from the British Home Office to play for Leeds United, wants to help Leeds in its bid to earn promotion to the
English Premier League.
“I’m here because I want to make a mark in English football and continue to play for the national team," Rogers said before the work permit was approved. "I’m definitely not here to enjoy the weather in Leeds. I want to test myself, prove myself and show that I can help the club out."
After finishing up his 2011 season with the Columbus Crew, Rogers was a free agent, and he signed with Leeds after impressing its manager, Simon Grayson, in training before Christmas. Rogers says he's ready for the challenge of playing abroad and was supported in his decision by U.S. national team coach Jurgen Klinsmann, whom he has known since his youth in Southern California.
“Jurgen’s a great guy and a great coach," said Rogers. "He’s got so much knowledge of the game and to be involved with his team over the past six months has been quite an experience. I’ll have to work very hard to stay in the national team and prove myself in every game I get called up for, but being at Leeds will push me forward. I had the opportunity to stay in MLS and it would have been very comfortable for me. I’d have been able to stay close to my family, but I’ve grown up watching English and European soccer. I felt that this was the right time to take a chance and challenge myself as a player and a person."