USWNT superstar Carli Lloyd has hinted that a possible retirement is on the horizon after admitting that she went into this summer’s Olympics with a ‘different mindset’ and acknowledging that she cannot continue to play on forever.
Lloyd, who scored twice to help the United States beat Australia to win a bronze medal as a consolation to finish a disappointing tournament for the reigning world champions, celebrated her 39th birthday last month and has been an international player for the past 16 years.
Only USWNT record holder Kristine Lilly (354) has now played more international matches than Lloyd’s 312 appearances in the history of women’s soccer.
Lloyd moved one ahead of Christie Pearce (311) by playing in the bronze medal match, with her two goals in the match also now making her the all-time leading USWNT scorer in Olympic competition. Overall, she has 128 goals for the national team, meaning that only Lilly (130), Mia Hamm (158) and Abby Wambach (184) have ever scored more.
“I’ve had different mindset going into this one,” Lloyd said after the bronze medal win.
“Obviously I’m at tail end of my career. At some point I have to hang up the boots and live life, my husband is eagerly waiting for me to switch off.”
Lloyd went to her first international tournament in 2007 when the USWNT finished third at the World Cup. A year later she won an Olympic gold medal, before going on to play in the 2011 World Cup final, missing a penalty in a shootout as Japan went on to lift the trophy.
Lloyd won a second Olympic gold medal in 2012 and went on to reach widespread international acclaim and stardom with her performances at the 2015 World Cup. She scored in every knockout game, including a 16-minute hat-trick in the final to thrash Japan and take revenge for 2011.
She was named the best female player in the world by FIFA in both 2015 and 2016 and claimed a second World Cup winner’s medal in 2019.