For the second Olympic cycle in a row, the USWNT will not be competing for a gold medal. Their semifinal loss to Canada early this morning saw to that.
The vaunted USWNT attack was held scoreless for the third time in five games. A 75th minute penalty taken by Canada’s Jessie Fleming was all the team needed to get a rare win over their North American rivals.
With their loss, the USWNT will not compete for a bronze medal against Australia later this week. And USWNT striker Megan Rapinoe made the team’s goal very clear: Any medal is special and worth playing for.
“Any medal is special,” Rapinoe said, per NBC’s Marisa Pilla. “We can’t lose sight of that.”
“Any medal is special. We can’t lose sight of that.”
Megan Rapinoe about still having a lot to play for.
— Marisa Pilla (@Pilla_Talk) August 2, 2021
The USWNT was uncharacteristically underwhelming in the 2020 Olympics. After having gone undefeated since early 2019, crushing the rest of the world in the World Cup in the process, they opened their Olympic account with a loss to Sweden.
They rebounded with a win over New Zealand before suffering a scoreless draw against Australia to end the group stage.
In the knockout round, they narrowly beat the Netherlands on penalty kicks after a 2-2 draw. Today’s loss to Canada was as inexplicable as it was devastating.
While Megan Rapinoe is right that any medal is a good medal, this loss will likely stick with the USWNT for a while.
If there’s any solace to it though, the last time the USWNT suffered a devastating Olympic defeat, they tore up the ensuing World Cup.