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Megan Rapinoe: USWNT loves America but ‘not in a bald-eagle-on-your-shoulder kind of way’

Megan Rapinoe finished her U.S. women’s national soccer team career with two Women’s World Cup championships, three CONCACAF women’s championships and an Olympic gold medal.

Rapinoe and the U.S. team fell short of a third consecutive championship earlier this month as the team was eliminated in the Round of 16. She looked back on her time with the U.S. team fondly in a recent interview with The Atlantic and addressed the criticism she and the rest of her teammates received for not singing the national anthem before the start of their matches.Rapinoe said she loved representing the U.S. on the international stage despite detractors and is going to miss that, along with the energy in stadiums.

“And I’ll miss being able to represent our country. I think, a lot of times, that gets lost, when people talk about me in particular: ‘Oh, you guys don’t sing the anthem, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. You don’t love America.’ But we do love America,” she said. “It’s just more in a James Baldwin kind of way, not in a bald-eagle-on-your-shoulder kind of way.”I look back and feel so lucky and so grateful to have had the career that I have had, for as long as I have had it. It’ll be something that I will miss forever. I don’t think I’ll ever not want to play in the biggest games, but I’ll be the biggest fan. I’ll be a fan at the next World Cup, for sure.”

The next step for Rapinoe is to finish out the National Women’s Soccer League season with OL Reign.

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