Carli Lloyd wrapped up her illustrious career with the U.S. women’s national team in Minnesota on Tuesday night with a 6-0 beatdown of South Korea – and tears of happiness as she stepped off the field for the final time while wearing red, white and blue.
Lloyd finished her career with the national team with two FIFA Women’s World Cup titles and two Olympic gold medals. The final match – a friendly at Allianz Field in St. Paul – was her 316th with the national team, the second-highest number of international appearances for any player.
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She scored 134 goals for the U.S., third-most in team history. With goals in the Tokyo Olympics, she was the first American to score in four different Olympics and her 10 goals in the event are the most for a U.S. player.
“It’s been emotional. But there’s just a sense of peace and contentment that I feel — it’s just joy and happiness,” Lloyd said. “It’s been an amazing journey and I gave it all I had, and now I can walk away into the next chapter.”
U.S. coach Vlatko Andonovski added: “Somebody said that Carli is the U.S. women’s national team. She’s brave. She’s relentless. She’s determined, intense and just doesn’t take no for an answer. She just pushes through and finds a way. So I think that she’s a great representative of what this team is all about.”
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The New Jersey native starred at Rutgers University between 2001 and 2004 and scored 50 goals in 83 appearances with the Scarlet Knights. She started to play for the U21 U.S. team in 2002 and joined the main team in 2005.
She played at the club level since 1999 with smaller New Jersey-based teams before joining top-level U.S. pro teams including the Chicago Red Stars, Sky Blue FC, Atlanta Beat, Western New York Flash, Houston Dash and most recently NJ/NY Gotham FC.
She also played club soccer overseas, for Manchester City in 2017.
While she won’t be playing anymore for the U.S., she made clear it wasn’t goodbye, it was see ya later.
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“I’m excited to see the future of this team. I’m saying goodbye on the field, but I want to continue to help in any way possible. I’m going to be the biggest fan, biggest cheerleader, and I want to see this team continue to succeed,” Lloyd said.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.