Rapinoe made her first appearance internationally in 2006 and played a crucial role in the USA’s World Cup victories in 2015 and 2019
One of the most accomplished players of her era, USA forward Megan Rapinoe, has declared her intention to retire after the current season concludes.
“As I look back, I wanted to do it in my unique style,” the 38-year-old mentioned.
“I am profoundly thankful to be part of this team, to have earned their trust, and for my body to have persevered all this while.”
Rapinoe, a two-time World Cup champion, will hang up her boots following the conclusion of her club, OL Reign’s NWSL season. The regular season finishes in October, and the play-off final will be held on 11 November.
Rapinoe revealed her retirement ahead of the USA’s friendly match against Wales on Sunday.
“It is with profound peace, gratitude, and anticipation that I announce that this will be my final season, my final World Cup, and my last NWSL season,” she articulated.
“I would never have predicted the extent to which this incredible sport would change my life.
“I am profoundly honored to have represented this nation and this federation for so many years. It’s undoubtedly the best thing I’ve ever done, and I am deeply appreciative of it.”
Rapinoe earned accolades as Best Fifa Women’s Player, World Cup golden boot, and golden ball, in addition to her Ballon d’Or in 2019.
She has represented USA 199 times, netting 63 goals since her first friendly against the Republic of Ireland in 2006.
Her accolades also include a gold medal from the 2012 London Olympics.
Rapinoe, who has a shot at adding to her laurels this summer, is a part of the USA squad vying for a historic third consecutive World Cup win in Australia and New Zealand.
Her career kicked off in 2002 with the Elk Grove Pride in the Women’s Premier Soccer League.
She had stints in Australia and France before moving to the Seattle Reign, now known as OL Reign, and won three NWSL Shields and a Women’s Cup.
USA head coach Vlatko Andonovski hailed her as “one of the most consequential figures in women’s soccer history with an unparalleled persona.”
Impact Beyond the Field
Rapinoe’s accomplishments extend beyond the football pitch; she is an influential voice in sports.
In 2012, she openly identified as gay and has advocated against racism, sexism, and homophobia. She has been at the forefront of the equal pay campaign for the USA women’s team.
She became the first white and female athlete to take a knee during the national anthem in 2016, standing in unity with Colin Kaepernick.
Final Game in Home State
Rapinoe is poised to earn her 200th cap in Sunday’s match against Wales at PayPal Park in San Jose, California, her home state.
“It feels immensely special, almost perfect,” she stated.
“I have about 40 people coming over for the match, it’s the closest I’ll get to playing in Redding in my career.
“Being able to do this in the Bay area, which feels like a second home, means a lot to me.
“I started my journey playing here and throughout this region. This is where young, energetic Megan got her start, and it feels fitting to announce my retirement here.”
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Megan Rapinoe retirement
When did Megan Rapinoe make her international debut?
Megan Rapinoe made her international debut in 2006.
How many times has Megan Rapinoe won the World Cup with the USA team?
Megan Rapinoe has won the World Cup twice with the USA team, in 2015 and 2019.
When is Megan Rapinoe set to retire from football?
Megan Rapinoe plans to retire from football at the end of the current NWSL season, which concludes with the play-off final on 11 November.
What major awards has Megan Rapinoe won during her career?
In 2019, Megan Rapinoe was named Best Fifa Women’s Player and won the World Cup golden boot, golden ball, and Ballon d’Or. She also won an Olympic gold medal at the 2012 London Olympics.
Has Megan Rapinoe played a significant role off the field as well?
Yes, Megan Rapinoe is recognized for her influence off the pitch. She came out as gay in 2012 and has been vocal about issues such as racism, sexism, and homophobia. She has also been a key advocate for equal pay for the USA women’s team.
Where will Megan Rapinoe play her final game?
Megan Rapinoe is set to play her final game in San Jose, California, her home state, during a match against Wales at PayPal Park.