By, Kyle Gibson
As I post this, the United States has just won its first Women’s World Cup since 1999 and third ever, with a 5-2 win against Japan.
The team played beautiful defense and acted cohesively at every step.
However, there was one supreme driving force when the going got tough in the knockout stages.
Carli Lloyd stepped up and delivered tremendously when it mattered. She is now a household name.
I have to admit, she did not play well at first, especially during the three Group Stage games.
Credit Coach Jill Ellis with keeping faith in Lloyd and moving her to a more attacking position.
She scored a penalty against Colombia, the winner against China and the first goal (again from the penalty spot) against Germany in the semifinal.
Then she followed up by scoring a hat trick in 17 minutes against Japan in the final. That included a brilliant run on a free kick, a right place, right time finish for the second and the DAGGER, a half field strike.
She also won the Golden Ball (best player) and silver boot (co-top scorer) for the tournament.
This will go down as the best single game performance in World Cup history, men’s or women’s. I think it’s better than even Maradona’s quarterfinal against England in 1986 that included the “hand of God” goal.
This should also go down as one of the best big game performance in American sports history.
This will definitely make Lloyd a household name, moreso than even Alex Morgan and Abby Wambach.
At risk of sounding like a business reporter, this is also a huge chance for endorsement deals. She is already endorsed by Nike, but is due to reap the benefits of a World Cup hat trick. People love winners and companies love to be associated with them.
There will probably never be a World Cup Final performance like this again.
It’s pretty safe to say that Carli Lloyd’s life will probably never be the same as well.