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Two-time Olympic gold medalist Carli Lloyd ripped the U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team for losing their hunger and becoming increasingly arrogant over the past four years or so.
Lloyd, a legend in women’s soccer, retired in 2021. During her career, the former striker was a major player in securing two World Cup championships, two Olympic golds, and was twice named FIFA Player of the Year.
Lloyd took issue with the women’s team dancing and smiling after barely advancing at the World Cup on Tuesday with a 0-0 tie against Portugal, thanks in large part to the goalpost blocking a would-be goal for Portugal.
“There’s a difference between being respectful of the fans and saying hello to your family,” Lloyd blasted, according to the New York Post. “But to be dancing, to be smiling — I mean, the player of the match was that post. You were lucky to not be going home right now.”
“I spoke up in that room, and I told them that you can’t take anything for granted — you have to work for everything that you get,” Lloyd said she told the women’s team.
“I just talked about what the mentality of this team has been about and passed down from generation to generation,” the athlete continued. “But the problem is when you win, and you get things, winning has taken on a different meaning. It is no longer we want to win because we want to win. No, we want everything that comes with winning, and we think we can just roll out and win games.”
But that’s not the case, Lloyd argued. “Teams see that. They see the arrogance in the U.S. and see that they’re not this unstoppable team. They see that they’re able to be broken down and beaten.”
Though she’s retired, the team still means a lot to her and always will, Lloyd added. “It just hurts me. It hurt me at the end of my career, those last couple of years to see the change and the shift in that culture and in that mentality. That hurt me to leave seeing what was coming.”
In 2022, Lloyd offered similar criticism of the women’s team, even openly admitting that she “hated” playing on Team USA the last couple of years of her career.
“The culture for me is what the culture has been on the national team since the inception,” she told Insider at the time. “All of those players, they brought a fight. They brought a hunger. They brought a desire. They brought mentality. They brought a never-say-die attitude. They brought finding a way, whether it’s the 91st minute, to get a ball in the back of the net. That has slowly dissipated from 2015 on.”