In a match that left fans both disappointed and relieved, the United States Women’s National Soccer team made an unceremonious exit from the Women’s World Cup on Sunday, following a lackluster showdown against Sweden. The game’s sole goal emerged during a shootout finale that showcased not one, but three missed penalty kicks from the American players.
However, it was the misfire by veteran player and full-time leftist activist Megan Rapinoe that served as a poignant metaphor for the team’s tribulations, and more specifically, Rapinoe’s own misdirected grievances.
Rapinoe, a 38-year-old former star, has become renowned not just for her soccer skills but for her fervent activism, which has at times eclipsed her contributions to the sport. Her recent years have been punctuated by protests, kneeling gestures, and vocal criticisms of America – distractions that have arguably overshadowed her role as a player. Amidst advocating for women’s autonomy and demanding equal pay, Rapinoe’s commitment to her team has often been questioned.
Nevertheless, her presence on the field against Sweden ended in embarrassment. While numerous American soccer enthusiasts expressed their disappointment over the results, a significant portion of them had grown weary of the team’s antics and were almost relieved by the premature elimination.
Social media quickly became a battleground for opinions, with some users highlighting the well-known fact that distractions in sports seldom yield positive outcomes. In this case, Megan Rapinoe’s role as a distraction was seen as detrimental to the team’s performance. As her soccer career concludes, the US team now faces the challenge of refocusing on their goal – securing victory on the field – as they prepare for the next World Cup in 2027.
In an unexpected twist, evangelical leader Franklin Graham, not a prominent figure in the sports world, stepped into the conversation on Monday. He didn’t mince words when addressing the glaring issues with this iteration of the Women’s World Cup team. Graham commented, “The US Women’s National Soccer Team lost to Sweden yesterday at the 2023 Women’s World Cup. I used to pull for our women’s soccer team, but recently they have shown disrespect for the US & have used their platform to promote the LGBTQ agenda. When they lost, I wasn’t sad.”
Graham’s sentiments echoed those of many sports fans, particularly casual soccer observers who are more acquainted with the team’s off-the-field controversies than their on-field achievements. There was a certain satisfaction in witnessing the team’s stumble, especially after their audacious self-promotion around the concept of equal pay – an accolade they didn’t earn this time around.
Graham continued, “I wish I didn’t feel that way, but when players think it is more about them than the nation they represent, I can’t support that. I agree with former President @realDonaldTrump who said about the team: ‘WOKE EQUALS FAILURE.'”
Here, Graham referred to former President Trump and his remarks following the international loss. Trump’s fiery comment reads, “The ‘shocking and totally unexpected’ loss by the U.S. Women’s Soccer Team to Sweden is fully emblematic of what is happening to our once great Nation under Crooked Joe Biden. Many of our players were openly hostile to America – No other country behaved in such a manner, or even close. WOKE EQUALS FAILURE. Nice shot Megan, the USA is going to Hell!!! MAGA.”
Agree or not, Trump’s words carried weight. Megan Rapinoe’s actions made it challenging to be a supporter of American soccer. It wasn’t about her sexual orientation or her political ideology, as some might argue. It was the amalgamation of factors that made it difficult to root for her – from her preoccupation with equal pay to her outspokenness, overshadowing her potential to inspire young athletes.
As her era on the field concludes, there’s a hope that the squad can shift their focus back to the game itself. With the personal #metoo chapter seemingly behind her, the team now has an opportunity to redirect their energies towards a common goal: restoring respectability and pride to American soccer.