End of an Era: Megan Rapinoe Retires After Remarkable Career

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Rapinoe retires after being forced to leave the match in the third minute after sustaining a non-contact injury

Megan Rapinoe, the star of the U.S. national women’s football team, was stretchered off the field just minutes into Saturday’s National Women’s Soccer League final, bringing an abrupt end to her storied career.

Rapinoe was forced to leave the match in the third minute after sustaining a non-contact injury. She was helped off the field by training staff and remained on the sidelines for the rest of the match, which the OL Reign lost to Gotham FC 2-1.

“This is a tough one,” Rapinoe said after the match. “Definitely not how I envisioned this last one going … So proud of the group, obviously. They put everything out there. So deserving to Gotham. They’ve had such a great year.

“Thank you to everyone who’s been on the journey for all this time,” Rapinoe said through tears. “It’s been amazing. Maybe besides this, I couldn’t have written it any different,” Rapinoe added.

Rapinoe, now aged 38, had previously said she would retire from the sport after this season’s National Women’s Soccer League.

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Megan Rapinoe’s accomplishments

Rapinoe is one of the best-known professional athletes in the United States and around the world, thanks to her long and distinguished career in women’s football and her commitment to social causes. She was a gold medallist with the United States at the London Summer Olympics in 2012 and has twice won the FIFA Women’s World Cup.

She also served as co-captain of the Women’s National Team from 2018 to 2020 alongside Carli Lloyd, and Alex Morgan. In addition to her accomplishments on the field, Rapinoe is a recipient of the 2019 Ballon d’Or and the 2019 FIFA Best Women Player of the Year.

In 2020, Rapinoe appeared on Time magazine’s 100 Most Influential People list, and, in 2022, she received the Presidential Medal of Freedom from President Biden.

She scored 63 goals in 203 appearances for her national team, while her 73 assists are the joint third-most by an American player at international level.

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