Megan Rapinoe‘s days on the field are over! The renowned athlete said her final goodbye to the U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team (USWNT) in an emotional post.
When the world’s greatest sportswomen are listed, it is impossible not to mention the Presidential Medal of Freedom honoree. Aside from dominating the female part of her sport, the 38-year-old gained recognition as an advocate for equal pay and LGBTQ+ rights.
After years of helping her team achieve numerous victories, the California native is hanging up her midfielder boots to embrace retirement. Following her heartbreaking exit at this year’s Women’s World Cup, the veteran soccer player reflected on her wholesome career.
Megan Rapinoe Claims She Is ‘Immensely Proud’ Of Her Time With The USWNT Following Final Match
On Sunday, August 6, the US team dropped out of the FIFA Women’s World Cup after a 5-4 penalty loss to Sweden. In her first post since failing to score the final shootout, the media personality addressed her exit from the US team.
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Taking to her Instagram page, Rapinoe shared an image of herself and her teammates gathered on the field alongside their coach and other crew members. The snap complimented the athlete’s lengthy caption, where she raved about her love for soccer and the USWNT.
“This game is so beautiful, even in its cruelest moments,” the 38-year-old penned, seemingly referencing the tragic moment that marked the end of her World Cup pursuits. Although she lost the competition, the heartbreaking event did not dim the midfielder’s accomplishments.
Praising her team, the two-time World Cup winner declared: “This group was so very special, and I am immensely proud of every single one of us. 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.”
According to the Olympic gold medalist, she and the USWNT members always did their best at every game, not only for their success but for their fans. “Fighting with everything that we have, for everything we deserve, for every person we possibly can,” Rapinoe claimed.
Looking back at her impressive record, the Best FIFA Women’s Player honoree expressed her gratitude to the US team. Showing her patriotic spirit, the California native chimed:
“It has been my honor to play for our country, with so many incredible woman, for so many years. Thank you, a million times over.”
Rapinoe’s touching farewell message received positive responses from fans and fellow celebrities. The list included the actress Sophia Bush — who is going through a divorce —who dropped the sweet comment: “Thank you for all you’ve done for both the beautiful game and our beautiful but imperfect nation.”
The “One Tree Hill” star praised the FIFA Golden Boot recipient for her achievements on and off the field, crediting the footballer for “inspiring millions” with her work. The entertainer’s conclusion read: “Some of us lucky ones got to call you an inspiration first, and then a friend. Proud of you, endlessly.”
Sharing similar sentiments, the official USWNT account penned, “Legend forever” alongside a golden crown emoji. Additionally, some US team members supported the post, with Naomi Girma writing: You’re amazing,” while Sophia Smith dropped a sad face and red heart emoji.
The Ballon d’Or Féminin Recipient Was Honored By President Joe Biden & VP Kamala Harris
Before her farewell message to the USWNT, Rapinoe received sweet tributes from US leaders, President Joe Biden and his vice president Kamala Harris. The lawmaker’s messages came after the renowned athlete announced her retirement with a passionate social media post in July.
“It is with a deep sense of peace & gratitude that I have decided this will be my final season playing this beautiful game,” the 38-year-old revealed on X, formerly Twitter.
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“I never could have imagined the ways in which soccer would shape & change my life forever, but by the look on this little girl’s face, she knew all along,” the media personality concluded, referencing the throwback snap of her younger self attached to the tweet.
Following her message, the first female vice president in U.S. history reacted to the post with praises. The 58-year-old shared a picture of the pair posing together alongside the comment:
“A champion on and off the field. You have changed the game of soccer, been a role model for millions, and fought tirelessly for equality. Congratulations on a tremendous career – good luck in the World Cup!”
Biden echoed similar sentiments, sharing a snap taken from Rapinoe’s Presidential Medal of Freedom ceremony. The lawmaker highlighted the 38-year-old’s achievements as an athlete and advocate, noting his excitement for her future.
“Congrats on an incredible career. Looking forward to seeing how you continue to help people believe in themselves and the possibilities of our nation,” the 46th US president penned.