Amy Rodriguez had been married for three years when she discovered she was pregnant with her son Ryan. “We weren’t really planning on starting a family yet, but it happened out of luck. I say that because it was a blessing, and we are very happy,” says the USA’s spitfire forward known to her teammates as A-Rod. “But when I first found out I was pregnant, I was really scared. I didn’t know what that meant for my career. I didn’t know how I was going to do it.”
What she did know was that she wasn’t ready to be done. “I missed the sport for months and months. I’d watched my team play. Soccer is what I love to do and I wasn’t ready to stop. So my motivation came from my love of the game, wanting to get back there.”
After Rodriguez was traded to FC Kansas City, she had additional motivation. “The idea of being traded, I interpreted as, “they don’t have faith in me; they don’t think I can get back. I wanted to prove them wrong.”
And she did. Playing in what may have been a career-best season, she led FC Kansas City to the NWSL championship match. In a 2-1 victory, she scored both goals to help her team claim the 2014 league crown.
THE MOM NETWORK
“I always joke with Christie Rampone that she made being a mom look really easy because I did not realize how hard it was,” says Rodriguez. “I was so young when Christie had her kids in camp. Now I realize that when she had her kids around, I should’ve been lending a hand, asking, Christie, do you need something? I was so young and naïve. I just thought all the moms had it under control.” She laughs, “Now I realize they don’t.”
Rodriguez’s own Kansas City teammates were awesome. “Ryan had twenty other ‘aunties’ to help take care of him and hold him. Lauren Holiday became his other mom. She’d make him baby food and play with him while I was in the shower,” says Rodriguez.
Full name is Amy Joy Rodriguez … Nickname is “A-Rod” … Graduated with degree in psychology from USC … Married former USC water polo player Adam Shilling in October of 2011 and the couple had a son, Ryan, on Aug. 6, 2013 … Enjoys wakeboarding and camping with her family … Oldest of three children, her younger sister Lauren (L-Rod) attended her cross-town rival UCLA … Father is of Cuban descent, and she speaks a bit of Spanish and hopes to one day be fluent … Favorite band is Coldplay … Loves chocolate … Hates bugs and heights … Favorite soccer players are Lionel Messi and Robin van Persie … Is a world class hair braider … Favorite color is green … Enjoys shopping and getting her nails done.
Saw her first significant action for the full National Team in 2008 after playing in youth World Cups in 2004 and 2006 … First cap with the WNT came in 2005 when she was a senior in high school … Will spend most of 2016 off the field as she is pregnant with her second child and is expecting another son in July … 2015: A member of the 2015 FIFA Women's World Cup champions, in her second World Cup she saw 118 minutes of action in two games and played a vital role in the 1-0 Quarterfinal victory against China PR in her only start of the tournament ... Played 589 minutes over 15 games in 2015 while starting five and scored two goals with three assists ... Scored against Switzerland on March 6 at the Algarve Cup after coming in as a second-half sub and started the championship match, helping the USA defeat France 2-0 and win its 10th Algarve Cup title … 2014: After a year off due to pregnancy, Rodriguez came back into the lineup for the National Team as a sub in the 88th minute of a 1-0 win against Canada on Jan. 31… Appeared in 12 games and started four for the U.S…. Scored her first goal of the year during her third game back on the field on Feb. 12 in a 8-0 USA victory over Russia… Helped the U.S. win the 2014 CONCACAF Women’s Championship – seeing action in two matches – to qualify for the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup … 2013: Did not play for the WNT as she was pregnant and had her first child, a son Ryan, who was born on Aug. 6 … 2012: Played in 29 matches, a career high, while starting five games … Scored nine goals with five assists … Tied a U.S. record with five goals in a match, all in the second half, when she came into the first match of the year at CONCACAF Olympic Qualifying against the Dominican Republic in Vancouver, Canada … All of her goals came as a substitute … Also scored against Brazil and nabbed the winning goal against Canada in the waning minutes of a 2-1 victory in a friendly in Sandy, Utah … Played in four matches at the Olympics, all off the bench, and won her second Olympic gold medal … Played in all five games at CONCACAF Olympic Qualifying, which included three starts, and had six goals and three assists … 2011: Started all 18 games she played for the USA and saw 1,102 minutes of action … Scored four goals with three assists … Played in her first Women’s World Cup at the senior level, starting the first five matches of the tournament … 2010: Played in 17 matches, starting 11, and finished third on the team in scoring with seven goals (topping her career high of six achieved in 2008) and one assist … Scored her first career hat trick against Guatemala at the CONCACAF Women’s World Cup Qualifying tournament, in which she played four games, starting three, and scored four times … Scored one of the biggest goals of her career in the second leg of the Women’s World Cup playoff series against Italy, pounding in the game-winner in a 1-0 victory on Nov. 27 at Toyota Park in Bridgeview, Ill. … Started both legs of the playoff series and played all but five minutes over the two games … 2009: Started five of the seven games she played for the USA … 2008: Played in 26 matches while starting 11 … Scored her first two full international goals in the first match of the year against Canada and added another against Norway in the Algarve Cup … Made a strong run to earn a spot in the Olympic Team, then came off the bench in the first match before starting the final five games … Scored once at the Olympics, against New Zealand, but had two assists, including the pass on the game-winner to Carli Lloyd in the gold medal game … Scored six goals with seven assists on the year including two game-winners against Brazil in 1-0 victories at the Peace Queen Cup in South Korea and in a friendly match in Commerce City, Colo., before the Olympics … 2006: Earned three caps in 2006, all off the bench at the Algarve Cup … 2005: Earned two caps at the Algarve Cup, playing as a sub against Finland and Denmark … Worked her way from the U.S. U-17s to the U-19s to the U-21s to the full WNT during the course of a year from March of 2004 to March of 2005 … Youth National Teams: A member of the U.S. squad at the 2006 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup, she had scored 14 goals in total 20 matches for the U-20s in 2006 heading into the World Cup, where she scored two goals as the USA finished fourth … Finished her U-20 career with 11 goals in 19 U-20 international matches … Helped the USA qualify for the 2006 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup by scoring four goals in the CONCACAF qualifying tournament in Mexico in January of 2006 … Scored the first goal in the 3-2 championship game win over Canada … A member of the U.S. U-19 team that participated in the 2004 FIFA U-19 Women’s World Cup in Thailand, she was the only uncapped player on the roster heading into the tournament … Scored in her first game in Thailand against South Korea and finished the tournament with two goals and two assists … Played on the USA’s 2005 Nordic Cup championship team in Sweden with the U-21s … Played with the U.S. U-16s and U-17s in 2001 and 2002 and started moving between the U-17s and U-19s in 2003 and 2004 … First Appearance: March 11, 2005 vs. Finland … First Goal: Jan. 16, 2008 vs. Canada.
2016: Will miss the season as she is pregnant with her second child … 2015: Had another excellent club season despite playing in and starting just 11 matches due to WNT commitments … Played 956 minutes and scored six goals with four assists … She then scored two goals in the NWSL playoff semifinal as FCKC defeated the Chicago Red Stars 3-0 and scored the game-winning on a header in the club’s 1-0 victory against the Seattle Reign as the club won its second consecutive championship … It was her sixth NWSL post-season goal and she was named the MVP of the championship game … Finished the season tied for seventh all-time in NWSL goals with 19 … 2014: After missing the inaugural season of the NWSL due to her pregnancy, Rodriguez had a dominant first year with FC Kansas City… Finished as the runner-up for the NWSL Golden Boot award after scoring a league second-best 13 goals, finished third in the voting for NWSL MVP, and was named to the NWSL Best XI First Team … Scored both goals in FCKC’s 2-1 victory over Seattle Reign in the NWSL Championship Game, giving the club its first NWSL title … Scored the opening goal in the semifinal game of the playoffs against Portland Thorns FC to help FCKC win the game 2-0 and advance to the championship game … Played in 22 games for FCKC and started 21… Scored the first goal of the 2014 NWSL season on April 12 against Sky Blue FC … 2013: Allocated to Seattle Reign FC for the inaugural season of the NWSL, but missed the entire year due to pregnancy and the birth of her son on Aug. 6 … On Nov. 7, she was traded from the Seattle Reign to FC Kansas City for Kristie Mewis (who was later traded to the Boston Breakers) … 2011: Played 641 minutes over 10 matches for the Philadelphia Independence of the WPS, starting six, and scored two goals … Scored in both of Philadelphia’s playoff matches, tallying the second goal in the 2-0 victory over magicJack in the Super Semifinal and then equalized in the 88th minute of the championship game against the Western New York Flash, sending the game to OT before Philly eventually fell in penalty kicks … 2010: Had a breakout season with the Philadelphia Independence, leading the team in scoring with 12 regular season goals and six assists … Finished third in the league in goals … Scored the winning goal in the first round of the playoffs in overtime against the Washington Freedom to send her team to the Super Semifinal … Finished second on the team in minutes played with 2,001 … Named to the WPS Best XI and a starter in the WPS All-Star Game … 2009: The No. 1 overall pick in the 2009 WPS College Draft by the Boston Breakers for the inaugural WPS season in 2009 … Started 11 of the 17 games she played for the Breakers, scoring one goal … Traded to the Independence on Sept. 29, 2009, during the WPS offseason, along with the Breakers’ first-round draft pick (fifth overall), for Philadelphia’s two first round selections (second overall and 11th overall) in the 2010 draft … Youth club: On the youth level, she played for West Coast SC from U-12 through U-14 before changing to the Laguna Hills Eclipse at the U-14 level … Won the state, regional and national title as U-15s and U-18s (in 2005) with the Eclipse.