‘We stand unified together’ – Long expects USWNT to snub White House visit after Rapinoe & Trump row
The midfielder says the squad is fully behind its captain and is unsure of an invite from the US president following the Women’s World Cup win
Allie Long has conceded that the U.S. women’s national team probably will not accept a potential invite to the White House after winning the World Cup, with Megan Rapinoe’s row with Donald Trump still fresh in their memories.
The USWNT won a record fourth World Cup on Sunday in Lyon after beating Netherlands 2-0 in the showpiece event.
A Rapinoe penalty and a Rose Lavelle strike ensured that the champions successfully defended their crown, capping a dominant showing throughout the tournament in France.
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As Jill Ellis’s side progressed through to the quarter-finals, the notion of a possible visit to the White House post-competition was raised, but Rapinoe responded angrily to a potential meeting with US president Trump.
The 34-year-old claimed she wasn’t “going to the f*cking White House” while protesting the national anthem before the start of each fixture by not joining in to sing with her teammates.
When asked if he felt Rapinoe should protest singing ‘The Star-Spangled Banner’, Trump responded: “No I don’t think so.”
The issue has been raised again after the USWNT completed its latest run to glory on the world stage, but Long insists that Rapinoe has the full backing of her colleagues.
She stated: “We’ll see if we are invited after [Rapinoe’s] comment. Whatever we do, we’ll do it together and probably not [go to the White House] I’d assume.”
When asked if Rapinoe would make that call, Long then replied: “I think that Megan… Yes. She already said that she will not be going there so we stand behind her.
“We stand unified together. If that’s what our team decides then that’s what we’ll decide, but we need the invite first. I don’t know if we’re invited yet.”
The issue of equal pay in football has also been a main subject of discussion in the wake of yet another trophy success for the USWNT and Long feels such a change would be a just reward for the team’s consistency at the highest level.
“I feel like we know that winning this we set the precedent for equal pay in the United States and hopefully around the world,” she added. “I encourage women all over to believe that they are equal and that they deserve equal pay and I hope that we can unify every national team. I don’t care – from the bottom to the top, it doesn’t matter. Everyone deserves their share.”
Long also revealed that the USWNT was channelling the spirit of the famous 1999 team which won the country’s second World Cup in California.
“Going into this World Cup I knew that I could be one of the players that I looked up to in 1999,” said Long.
“Watching them win and hold the championship, that’s a driving motivation behind all of us and it’s a responsibility.
“We welcome that and we love it and I hope that millions and millions of girls at home are watching, that they felt inspired and that it’s sparked something and planted seeds in their heart and that’s what they strive for when they grow up. It starts with a dream and then it’s up to you.”