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Who is Megan Rapinoe? Did she miss her penalty kick, why was she laughing?

Megan Rapinoe has explained why she appeared to be laughing after missing her penalty kick for the US at the Women’s World Cup.

The veteran player who has played in the championship four times, helped the US team to victory in 2015 and 2019, but this year it was not to be as they were knocked out by Sweden in penalty kicks.Rapinoe has faced criticism from fans and former President Donald Trump who blamed the United States Women’s National Team (USWNT) loss on “wokeness”. However, she has received praise from President Joe Biden who said the team had “made your country proud”.

So, who is Megan Rapinoe and why was she laughing after missing her penalty kick? Here’s everything you need to know.
Who is Megan Rapinoe?

Rapinoe is a soccer player for the USWNT. Born in Redding, California in 1985, the 38-year-old helped lead the US to victory, winning two World Cups in 2015 and 2019, and an Olympic gold medal in 2012.She was named FIFA’s Women’s World Player of the Year in 2019 and as well as playing nationally has played for football teams including the Chicago Red Stars, Philadelphia Independence, Florida’s magicJack, Australia’s Sydney FC and Olympique Lyonnais in France.

Rapinoe is well known for her activism for LGBTQ+ and racial equality. She was one of the first football players to publicly come out in 2012 and has taken the knee during the national anthem and. Reported by GQ in February 2021, she explained: “Being a gay American, I know what it means to look at the flag and not have it protect all of your liberties.”

Rapinoe revealed she would be retiring from football after the World Cup in a post on Twitter. Alongside a photo of the soccer player as a child, she told fans: “ this will be my final season playing this beautiful game”.Did she miss penalty kick?
The US faced Sweden on Sunday (6 August), but after a goalless 90 minutes and 30 minutes of extra time, they moved into a penalty shoot-out to win a place in the final 16. The two-time defending champions performed their worst ever finish at the World Cup after they were eliminated 5-4 on penalty kicks.

Rapinoe missed her penalty kick, shooting over the bar, but she was not the only US player to miss as both Sophia Smith and Kelley O’Hara did.Rapinoe was pictured smiling after missing the penalty kick, which caused her to receive criticism from fans. She was also pictured crying with her teammates, the American soccer player has not missed a penalty in five years.

She described missing the penalty kick as a “sick joke”. Reported by the Guardian, she told Fox News, “I’m really happy for us that we went out like that, playing the way we did [against Sweden], having a ton of joy on the ball.

“This is like a sick joke for me personally, this is a dark comedy that I missed a penalty. This is the balance to the beautiful side of the game.”

What has Donald Trump said?
The former president has thrown shade at Rapinoe following the US team being knocked out of the World Cup. Taking to his social media platform Truth Social, he blamed President Joe Biden, along with “wokeness” and hit out at Rapinoe for the loss.Trump said: “The ‘shocking and totally unexpected’ loss by the U.S. Women’s Soccer Team to Sweden is fully emblematic of what is happening to the our once great Nation under Crooked Joe Biden”.

He continued: “Many of our players were openly hostile to America – No other country behaved in such a manner, or even close. WOKE EQUALS FAILURE.” Adding: “‘Nice shot Megan, the USA is going to Hell!!! MAGA”.

In contrast, President Biden praised the team, tweeting that they had “made your country proud.” The President said: “Congratulations on an incredible run. This team is something special and I’m looking forward to seeing how you continue to inspire Americans with your grit and determination – on and off the field.”

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