Megan Rapinoe quickly became the face of women’s soccer, and it’s not just because she is a fantastic player. She turned winning into a rock star, and she now owns the sport because of her personality and her drive.
Creating a profile and seeking assistance on Sportamix by developing your sports skills can help you become a rock star in your particular sport. Sportamix can help you get recruited, find a coach, get advice and share your individual personality like Rapinoe has done.
She Plays Well
Rapinoe scored five times in the final three games of the Women’s Cup to lead the tournament in the number of goals. She won the Golden Ball and the Golden Boot as the best player because of it.
Here are some of the ways Rapinoe distinguishes herself as a player, and how she changed women’s soccer forever.
Noticed immediately throughout the world, Rapinoe exudes a style that is crafty and clever. Her timing is impeccable, and her footwork is unmatched.
She is the first and only player, male or female, to ever score a goal directly from a corner at the Olympic Games, and audiences are still talking about it. And then, at the very last minute of the 2011 FIFA Women’s World Cup quarter final match, she crossed the ball to Abby Wambach in a match against Brazil that resulted in a tie score. And, after scoring a penalty shoot, that resulted in a win for the American team.
She Listens to her Coach
Rapinoe believes in Coach Jill Ellis, who rebuilt the women’s U.S. soccer team after being eliminated in the 2016 Olympics. Rapinoe has admitted she disagrees sometimes with Ellis, but ultimately the coach wins out.
She is Tireless
Ellis is retiring after becoming the only coach with two World Cup wins, and Rapinoe said she knows that even superstars need good training and direction from a good coach.
As a soccer team captain, playing primarily as a winger, she has a gold medal after the 2012 Olympics, two FIFA World Cup championships and runner-up at the 2011 FIFA World Cup. She played for France, as well as the Chicago Red Stars, Philadelphia Independence and MagicJack.
She is sponsored by Nike, BodyArmor, Hulu, LUNA Bar, Samsung, Procter & Gamble and many other companies.
She Ignores her Age
At age 34, she is the oldest woman to score a World Cup final and she is aware that she may be older than the average player. Most of the pundits think she is becoming too old to continue to play, but she and her colleagues on the team, who are near the same age, feel like they are just becoming ripe with their skills.
Injuries and wear and tear on the body are inevitable, and at one point, Rapinoe admitted to reporters, “Obviously, I’m aware I’m not 25 anymore.”
Yet, she’s not ready to retire and she continues to be an inspiration for older professional athletes.
She is an Individual
Rapinoe is know for her colored hair. She intrigued fans by bursting onto the world stage with a purple coif. Other sports commentators have said her hair color changes like lights on a Christmas tree.
But, that doesn’t phase Rapinoe, who remains proudly individual in her gender-fluid style and appearance.
She is Outspoken
Some commentators have said no other female athlete has been as outspoken since Billie Jean King nearly half a century ago spoke out for women’s rights in sports.
Rapinoe speaks from the heart, and fights for equal pay for women’s soccer. Once at a stadium in France, 58,000 audience members stood and shouted “Equal Pay” in support of her federal lawsuit against the Soccer Federation charging gender discrimination and pay inequity.
She Looks Ahead
She has also been out as a lesbian since 2012 and has become a role model for LGBT youth and athletes. She works with the Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network, Athlete Ally and won awards from LGBT organizations.
The 2020 Olympics are around the corner, and Rapinoe just continues to look forward to continuing with the game.
She says, “I’m made for this I love it. Obviously, getting to play at the highest level in a World Cup with a team like we have is incredible.”
She was just named as 2019’s Athlete of the Year by Sports Illustrated.
No team has ever won the World Cup and Olympics in back-to-back years. Rapinoe looks forward to help change that.