Home Sports Emotional Farewell as Megan Rapinoe Retires and Team USA Exits Women’s World Cup 2023

Emotional Farewell as Megan Rapinoe Retires and Team USA Exits Women’s World Cup 2023


Unexpected Conclusion for Megan Rapinoe as She Retires from Global Stage.

Megan Rapinoe’s exit from the world of football wasn’t scripted this way. Expressing her disappointment as a “dark comedy” and a “sick joke,” Rapinoe, a two-time Women’s World Cup champion, bid an emotional farewell to the global stage after 17 years of dedicated service to the Stars and Stripes.

On her 202nd appearance for the USA, the reigning world champions faced a dramatic 5-4 penalty shootout loss to Sweden in the last-16 stage after a goalless draw in Melbourne. Rapinoe, 38, a standout player of her era, had previously announced her retirement before the tournament began.

As the tension-filled night saw the USA leading 3-2 in penalties, Rapinoe, who came on as a substitute, missed her penalty kick, followed by Sophia Smith and Kelley O’Hara also failing to score in the shootout. The decisive penalty, converted by Lina Hurtig, sealed the fate of the four-time world champions, leaving Rapinoe overwhelmed with emotions.

The Olympic gold medalist, attempting to shield her face with her shirt, was captured on camera in a moment of despair. Teammate Lynn Williams offered consolation to Rapinoe shortly after the game, as her hopes of concluding her illustrious USA career on a high note were shattered. “This is like a sick joke,” Rapinoe lamented. “For me personally, I’m just like, this is dark comedy. I missed a penalty.” Despite the outcome, Rapinoe departs as a true icon of American soccer.

Having made her international debut in July 2006 against the Republic of Ireland, Rapinoe carved her place in history as one of the most prominent players in the United States women’s national team. This World Cup marked her fourth appearance after the 2011, 2015, and 2019 editions. Rapinoe played a significant role in establishing the USA’s dominance in women’s football, notably scoring in the 2019 final, securing consecutive world titles.

However, the triumphant memories from Lyon in 2019 seemed distant as a somber Rapinoe, the 2019 Best FIFA Awards women’s player of the year, bid her final farewell to USA fans before disappearing down the tunnel.

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