Megan Rapinoe has broken her silence on the United States’ elimination from the Women’s World Cup, calling the exit “heartbreaking”.
The USWNT ace missed a penalty in the 5-4 shoot-out defeat against Sweden in the round of 16 on Sunday (August 6) in what was her last World Cup match.While she was one of three players to miss their spot kicks, the 38-year-old came in for much harsher criticism due to her behaviour after missing the penalty.
After blazing it over the bar, she swiftly turned around and was seen laughing which had critics calling her ‘the epitome of selfish’ and ‘diabolically arrogant’.
The US’ exit ended dreams of winning the World Cup for a third consecutive time as Rapinoe, along with several of her international team-mates, took to social media to talk about their painful defeat.
“This game is so beautiful, even in its cruellest moments. This group was so very special, and I am immensely proud of every single one of us,” Rapinoe wrote, alongside a photo of the devastated team.”This team is in special hands as I walk away, just like it always was, and always will be. Because that is what this team is all about.”
The OL Reign star is retiring from professional football at the end of her club season in September and has had a stellar career including winning the Ballon d’Or Féminin and being named The Best FIFA Women’s Player in 2019.An Olympic gold medal and two Women’s World Cup titles was earned with her country which she described representing as an “honour”.
“We lay it all out on the line every single time. Fighting with everything that we have, for everything we deserve, for every person we possibly can.
“It has been my honour to play for our country, with so many incredible woman, for so many years. Thank you, a million times over.”
Rapinoe ends her international career having played 202 times for her country and scoring 62 goals from 2006 to 2023.