Megan Rapinoe Aug 6, 2023; Melbourne, AUS; United States forward Megan Rapinoe (15) attempts but misses her shot in the penalty kick shootout during a Round of 16 match in the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup at Melbourne Rectangular Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jenna Watson-USA TODAY Sports

During the United States Women’s National Team’s loss in the penalty kick shootout to Sweden, Megan Rapinoe had a crucial miss that could have essentially clinched the victory for the USWNT. And during a recent interview, she opened up about the miss.

During a recent interview with The Atlantic, Megan Rapinoe was asked what was going through her mind as she approached her penalty kick. And she had a pretty simple response.

I’m going to score,” Rapinoe said. “Honestly, something that has made me so successful in penalty kicks for so long is the acceptance and the realization that I will miss them. I miss them in training regularly. I’ve been lucky not to miss a lot in actual competition, but eventually, that can happen. But I love taking them. I would take them all the time. I would take that one again. I would pick me to take them.”

Rapinoe acknowledged that the odds are that at some point, she would miss a crucial penalty kick in a big moment. But she didn’t allow that to scare her away from attempting the kick.

“For a long time, I have thought about missing one in a really big moment. What are you going to do? The only other thing you could do is to not take one. I’m not going to do that,” Rapinoe said. “I would rather step up and be in that moment. And I think that’s something that made the criticism after that loss particularly fake and disingenuous and absurd and outrageous to me. It’s like, you’re going to bash on me for getting out there and trying my best?”

It’s certainly not the way Rapinoe wanted to end her career, but it sounds like she’s proud of herself for the effort.

[The Atlantic]