- Alex Morgan, 30, has led the United States Women's National Soccer Team to victory in this year's World Cup.
- Morgan, who started every game in the World Cup 2019, scored six goals and had three assists to earn an adidas Silver Boot in the tournament.
- This was the athlete's third World Cup, and with over 100 goals, she is one of the leading scorers in U.S. Women's Soccer history.
When it comes to successful female athletes, professional soccer player Alex Morgan is among the elite. The 30-year-old California native has succeeded in nearly every soccer club she's ever stepped foot in, including this year's Women's World Cup in France.
It all started with a passion for soccer in her youth. "Having this dream since I was seven years old to be a professional soccer player and living it now I never really understood the responsibility that I had and the amount of eyes on me, and it's pretty incredible but I feel like because of that you have a responsibility to leave the game in a way that sets up that next generation to do even bigger and better things," Morgan said in a video on the USWNT Instagram.
Alex, who joined the U.S. Women's National Soccer Team as it's youngest player in 2010, is now a senior and captain on the team, and she has definitely stepped up as a leader on and off the field. In this history of U.S. Women's Soccer, she ranks as a top goal scorer with over 100 caps and won a silver adidas Golden Boot in this year's Women's World Cup.
If you need a little refresher on the athlete in light of the Women's World Cup final this morning, here are five facts about Alex Morgan as the Women's celebrates their victory against Netherlands.
1. She was a cover model 'Sports Illustrated Swimsuit' 2019.
Joining supermodel Tyra Banks and model Camille Kostek, Morgan was one of three cover models for this year's issue of Sports Illustrated 2019. The captain was previously featured in the 2012 issue of Sports Illustrated, though she did not cover.
Morgan's teammates, Megan Rapinoe, Crystal Dunn, and Abby Ddahlkemper were also featured in this year's issue.
2. She's been to three FIFA World Cups in her career.
When Morgan stepped on the field as a forward for the USWNT in 2011, she was the youngest player at 22. She knew she had to step up, and she did. Using her incredible speed and powerful strength, Morgan cut around the French backline to score her first World Cup goal in the semi-finals, and then again in the finals against Japan. It was the start of many more, and now she's become a leading goal scorer for the U.S. Morgan has also led the U.S. in the 2012 and 2016 Olympic Games, earning a gold medal when the team beat Japan in the 2012 Summer Olympic Games.
3. She's scored over 100 goals for the USWNT.
Speaking of goals, Alex has scored a lot of them. On April 4, 2019, she scored her 100th goal while representing U.S. As of today, she's scored 107 goals in her 168 international appearances. This lands her in the top 10 spot for the women's national team, although Abby Wambach still reigns as leading goal scorer of all time with 184 international goals. Morgan's impressive 43 assists also land her in the top 15 in U.S. soccer history.
4. She won an adidas Silver Boot in the World Cup 2019.
Morgan has led the U.S. Women's National Team to victory in the 2019 FIFA World Cup. Alex has started in every single game during the tournament, and in her 445 minutes on the field, she's scored six goals (five against Thailand, one against England) and had three assists. Though Alex was in the running for a first place Golden Boot against England's Ellen White and her teammate and co-captain 35-year-old Megan Rapinoe, Rapinoe ultimately took home the honor, in addition to winning tournament VIP. Alex took home the Silver boot, and Rose Lavelle, who scored her World Cup goal today (her tenth international goal), won a bronze tournament VIP. Coach Jill Ellis, who has coached the USWNT since 2014, became the first coach ever to win two women's World Cup titles with today's win. Well deserved all around!
5. She earned a spot on TIME's 100 List 2019.
From the moment women's soccer was established in the U.S., they fought for equality. Sixteen year's later, the current team is fighting for equality on and off the field, which is why Alex earned a spot on TIME's 100 List this year.
Despite today's World Cup win and the success of the program, the U.S. team will earn less than the winner's of the men's World Cup (about 40 percent less than the Men's National Team). And that doesn't sit well with members of the current roster. On March 8 of this year (yes, International Women's Day!), a handful of U.S. player's filed a federal gender-discrimination lawsuit against the United States Soccer Federation, which governs the sport. "Eventually, you just have to take a stand," Morgan, who was among those who filed, told TIME.
In an essay for , Alex wrote:
"We think it's time for U.S. soccer to truly address the inequality and do what is right. This is not about the women's team going after the men's team, or comparing stats and records with them. We love those guys, and they have come out publicly in support of our filing and have offered to help however possible. They have also fought their way to better compensation, and without them fighting for what they have, we would have no general benchmark for what we deserve: equal pay for equal play."
Nike, who sponsors the program, released a promotional video that highlights that, despite the victory and success of the U.S. Women's National Team in this World Cup and beyond, the fight for equality in female sports is not done. It's safe to say this team has found victory in one fight this summer, but they will not stop fighting off the field until they get what they deserve.
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