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Red Bulls still hope Rodgers plays this season

Saturday - 3/31/2012, 5:00pm  ET

HARRISON, N.J. (AP) - The New York Red Bulls hope forward Luke Rodgers can get his visa woes fixed and return to the Major League Soccer team sometime this season.

Speaking before Saturday's game against the Montreal Impact, general manager Erik Soler said the 30-year-old English forward signed to play with Lillestrom in Norway after the Red Bulls terminated his contract Friday. Soler won't say why Rodgers didn't get his visa, but said the Red Bulls still retain his rights

Rodgers joined the Red Bulls in January 2011 and scored nine goals in 23 league appearances and 10 goals overall last year. He previously played for Red Bulls coach Hans Backe in England for fourth-tier Notts County.

"What I can say is that we, of course, are not very happy but we respect the fact that there is a system in place that makes decisions," Soler said. "However, we are not giving up, so we will continue to try."

Soler said the Red Bulls released Rodgers so he could play somewhere.


(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)