It was a dream that became a reality.
U.S. Women’s National Team midfielder Carli Lloyd scored three goals in the first 16 minutes of Sunday’s World Cup final, a record hat trick that propelled the Americans to victory. But Lloyd says she visualized herself doing even more all the way back in May.
Lloyd, 32, said today on “Good Morning America” that while out for a run on her own in May she visualized herself scoring “four or five” goals in the World Cup final.
“Just getting super excited for the World Cup,” Lloyd said of the moment. "It’s just crazy what the mind can do.”
Crazy is what sportswriters and fans everywhere are now calling Lloyd’s performance in the U.S.’s 5-2 victory over defending World Cup champions Japan. The win gave the U.S. women their first World Cup win since 1999.
Lloyd says the whole U.S. team felt confident they would walk away from the field victorious.
“We didn’t come here to take second place,” Lloyd said. "We came here to win it and there was something different in the air with these last few games with our team.”
“I think we all believed. We all knew it,” she said. "We felt it and what a convincing win today to get it done."
Lloyd also earned praise for her sportsmanship after she was seen giving team veteran Abby Wambach, playing her final World Cup, her captain’s armband when Wambach was subbed in during the game’s final minutes.
“I said to Abby, ‘Look, take the arm band,’ and she said, ‘No,’ and I said, ‘Look, please take the arm band,’” Lloyd recalled. “I took it off my arm and put it on her arm and you know, just told her, she deserves it.”
“She’s been a legend,” she said of Wambach. “She’s been an inspiration on and off the field for this team for so many years and I’m proud to call her my friend and my teammate and so happy for her that we could get this World Cup win.”
Lloyd says she hasn’t “slept a wink” since the game ended late yesterday in Vancouver, British Columbia, and hasn’t had time to see all the outpouring of support heading her way.
“[I’ve] barely been able to get through text messages and some of the social media stuff,” she said. “I had some teammates telling me that Mr. President tweeted me, got to meet Joe Biden today so that was pretty cool.”
“I think it’s huge for women’s soccer,” Lloyd said of all the support for the team and coverage of the World Cup. “It felt like we were playing in the U.S…the energy and atmosphere was just unbelievable this World Cup."