““We should have put some in the back of the net and we didn’t. We own that. We’re not happy with the performance we put out there. But at the same time, we’re moving on.””
That was United States Women’s National Team forward Alex Morgan reacting to the team’s 0-0 draw early Tuesday morning against Portugal that barely qualified them for the Round of 16 knockout round. Portugal’s Ana Capeta nearly scored in stoppage time – a goal that would have essentially eliminated the U.S. – but her shot hit the left post and rolled out of the box.
“I was like, fuck. Right at the end, I mean, yeah, that’s stressful,” U.S. midfielder Megan Rapinoe, who is planning on retiring after this Women’s World Cup, said after the game. “Because you’re out. If that goes in, you’re out. Your whole international career is over. It’s terrible.” Rapinoe entered the game in the 61st minute as a substitute, but the 2019 Women’s World Cup’s Golden Boot winner hasn’t lived up to her lofty standards so far this tournament as she is without a goal or assist so far. “Obviously we want to play great and score a lot of goals, and we didn’t do that. We know that it can be better, and has to be better, moving forward,” said Rapinoe. “But ultimately, we’re on to the next round.” See also: NBA players react to reported $776 million offer for soccer star Kylian Mbappé: ‘Wtf’ After the game, tournament broadcaster Fox Sports briefly showed video clips of USWNT players including Morgan, Crystal Dunn, Trinity Rodman and Lindsey Horan dancing and posing for photographs with fans. Fox pundit and former USWNT player Carli Llyod was critical of those moments: “I have never witnessed something like that.” Llyod is a two-time Women’s World Cup winner and universally viewed as one of the best American footballers of her generation. “There’s a difference between being respectful of the fans and saying hello to your family. But to be dancing, to be smiling? I mean, the player of the match was that post. You’re lucky to not be going home right now,” she said.