In a South King backyard, there is a ten-year-old girl who has the best socially distant soccer-training partner around– Danny Robles. Unlike most of his teammates, Robles still lives at home. That means his time Staying Home is with a large supportive family.
“My little sister is ten, and she also plays soccer. Sometimes I join her in her drills.”
Danny’s little brother still has a barber – Danny.
The family is even more together during the COVID-19 pandemic than they used to be. With team meals, the midfielder participates in more of the family meals, his favorite being grilled meats with distinctly Hispanic flavors.
He also gets more game time with his family. There’s a lot of Lotería being played in the Robles household.
“Family time is board games, and with my friends it is video games.”
Azriel Gonzalez is the Defiance teammate Robles keeps in touch with the most. The two will drift between English and Spanish, staying connected while separate.
Another thing that sets Danny apart from the rest of the squad is that he was the only one doing traditional high school, even if just a small amount. Prior to his high school moving to remote learning Robles attended one class a day. His other studies were part of the Sounders remote learning program that Defiance players and many in the Sounders Academy take part in.
“For the most part, school is still the same” during the pandemic. One big change to school will be graduation.
“I think the graduation is something that I’m concerned about. Thirteen years of hard work – it will get recognized, but not in that special way with your family seeing you walk across the stage.”
Familial bonds are important to Robles – for school, for fun, for food, for soccer.
Through all of this, he’s doing all the fitness and drills expected of a professional. The central midfielder wants to add something to his set of soccer tools. His right foot is getting extra work.
“I’ve been practicing a lot with my right foot, because I don’t really use it – shots, long balls.”
That will be a sight to look forward to at Cheney Stadium when Tacoma Defiance play games again. A layer back from the forwards, the ability of Robles to hit from distance more effectively will force defenses to adjust.
Danny Robles is look forward to the return of matches too. That will happen because his Defiance family works towards flattening the curve and safely resuming the sport that unites us.
“I want to start playing in Tacoma with the fans. Hopefully, everyone stays safe and takes precautions.”
STAY HOME PICKS
Movie: Miracle in Cell No. 7
TV Show: Money Heist
Video Games: Fortnite, FIFA
Book: Can’t Hurt Me: Master Your Mind and Defy the Odds by David Goggins
Read about what the players, coaches, and staff at Cheney Stadium are doing while they Stay Home, Stay Healthy.
ABOUT TACOMA DEFIANCE
Tacoma Defiance is the USL Championship affiliate of reigning MLS Cup Champion Seattle Sounders FC. You can follow The Future of Champions on Twitter (@TACDefiance), Facebook, and Instagram (@tacdefiance). We are #DefiantlyTacoma.
TACOMA TEAM STORE
More information on social distancing and how to prevent the spread of Covid-19 can be found at Tacoma-Pierce County Health. The most up-to-date information on how COVID-19 is affecting events at Cheney Stadium can be found here.