The U.S. Women’s National Soccer team may have suffered a historic loss to Canada this week, but the team’s resolve proved to be unshaken. The four-time Olympic gold medalists will once again make their appearance on the podium, this time claiming a bronze medal with a 4-3 win over Australia.
Megan Rapinoe scored the first goal of the match early on, her team-leading 8th of 2021 and the 60th of her international career. According to USA Network, it was her earliest goal ever scored in a bronze medal match.
Her incredible corner kick goal – also known appropriately as an Olímpico – is once in a lifetime feat for any player if they’re lucky, but this is the second time Pinoe has pulled it off.
The first time? At the 2012 Olympics in London.
The Australians followed that up with a marvelous equalizer by striker Sam Kerr, which Rapinoe once again answered with a brace at 21 minutes. Carli Lloyd scored just before halftime – and again immediately after halftime scored again to bring the score up to 4-1.
With appearances on every U.S. Olympic team since 2008, Lloyd is the first USWNT player in history to score in four different Olympics.
Carli Lloyd, playing in her fourth Olympics, goes level with Vivianne Miedema, who just played her first, on 10 career goals in the tournament. https://t.co/E2quPvNdga— Tim Stillman (@Stillberto) August 5, 2021
Rapinoe joked after the US loss to Canada this week, “You guys are trying to put me out to pasture already,” when asked by the media if this would be her last Olympics. While there’s valid criticism to be made about having Rapinoe center this veteran squad instead of younger talent, it can’t be denied that Rapinoe and Lloyd have earned the right to not have their longevity called into question just yet.
Carli Lloyd, it will surprise literally none of you, is doing wind sprints alone. pic.twitter.com/Lsl5ty0CmY— Andrew Das (@AndrewDasNYT) August 2, 2021
Down by three goals, the Matildas continued to put pressure on the American defenses and broke through with two more goals in the second half from Caitlin Foord and Emily Gielnik, but failed to tie up the game. With Australia slated to host the FIFA Women’s World Cup in 2023, we can definitely expect some exciting rematches in the near future.
Four out LGBTQ players on the U.S. squad will be taking home bronze: Rapinoe, Kelly O’Hara, Tierna Davidson and goalkeeper Adrianna Franch.
As we await tomorrow morning’s upcoming finals between Canada and Sweden with out players on each side guaranteed either gold or silver, Team LGBTQ’s medal count is now up to 25.