Since 2008, the United States Women’s Soccer Team (USWNT) has been the powerhouse in Women’s International Soccer, sitting at #1 in the FIFA World Rankings. Female soccer icons such as Abby Wambach, Mia Hamm, Brandi Chastain, Hope Solo, Julie Foudy, and Kristine Lilly have come and gone, making their mark on the soccer community and bringing the women’s side to the global stage. They were the true trailblazers for women’s soccer, creating international competition and arguably triggering other countries to create and invest in their female programs. Women’s soccer was only recently embraced in the 90s, and slowly sexism and stigmatization have faded out, and the beloved game for women is being taken seriously. The United States certainly set the fire, but other countries have caught up and are ready to take the torch.
The United States started on a bad note, losing 3-0 to a consistent rival, Sweden, in the Tokyo Olympics this summer. Looking sloppy and disconnected, the reigning world champions could not find the back of the net or keep the ball out of theirs. As a result, their 44-game winning streak came to a screeching halt and was surely a slap in the face. Their next group stage game was a dominating 6-1 win over New Zealand. Then they played Australia and, after 120 minutes of play, tied 0-0, making it into the quarterfinals.
The Netherlands gave the United States gals a run for their money, sending the game into overtime and drawing 2-2 i...