Back in 2012 while I was an agent at Wasserman Media Group I had the opportunity to work with Andy Rose. Andy had been a friend of mine for a few years already but he trusted me and decided to allow me to represent him as he entered the world of professional soccer.
I knew Andy very well as a person and as a player by the time his college career concluded. He had just finished a stellar four years at UCLA and was desperate to find out what the future held. After the MLS combine came and went, teams were not set on what position he would play at the next level and his future was slightly uncertain at this point. I remember him being quite nervous and slightly anxious. I also remember him having this unwavering feeling that he could succeed at the MLS level, a feeling I agreed with. He knew he had to prove himself regardless of the situation he was ultimately thrust into.
I vividly remember being at the MLS SuperDraft in 2012 and how Andy's name wasn't called. Having to call him to discuss what the options may be was not easy. There was a supplemental draft two days later but he was pissed that he was overlooked. I couldn't blame him. We discussed European options but those weren't concrete at that point so the focus stayed on Major League Soccer. On January 17, Real Salt Lake took Andy with the 6th pick in that supplemental draft. He was thrilled they saw something in him. Come to find out a few hours later that Seattle had called and inquired about him as well. Not long after he was traded to Seattle in exchange for another player (Leone Cruz). The feeling of being wanted is one every player wants.
Andy signed his first professional contract that March but the road to the field still seemed far away given the quality on the Sounders roster. I remember many phone calls with Andy, some with frustration and others with hope. Regardless of the situation at any given time his confidence in himself never wavered. He made his debut in May of the 2012 season. As amazing as that is, what's more amazing is that first, everyone thought he was too slow to be a central midfielder in MLS, guess where Seattle used him? Second, he appeared in 32 matches in all competitions and finished the season with four goals and five assists. Pretty damn impressive for a rookie.
Seattle's success as a club since that 2012 season is pretty well known to anyone paying attention. Big stars have come and gone and fans have filled the seats in the Pacific Northwest. But through that time Andy Rose has continued to blossom as a pro. He amassed over 80 appearances for the club and became pivotal to their success. Out of contract this year Andy and I discussed his options (only as a friend, not an agent). He was offered a contract by Seattle who clearly valued his services but in typical Andy fashion he wanted to challenge himself again, and push the boundaries. So when I saw yesterday that after a trial with Coventry City (League One) they had signed him to a deal until June of 2017 I wasn't surprised and couldn't have been prouder. Again, proving people wrong.
Andy is the example of what hard work and why it's so crucial to believe in your abilities regardless of opinion. He's worked very hard toward this and I can't wait to see what is next for him.
Follow Andy as he heads to Coventry City @andyrose_5