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Ali Krieger thanks Gotham FC for ‘unforgettable’ experience

Gotham FC defender Ali Krieger stands with her children before her final NWSL regular-season game. (Jonathan Jones/USA TODAY Sports)

Ali Krieger’s final regular-season NWSL game came Sunday. And while she thankfully has at least one more game left to play, the moment still brought with a flood of emotions.

Krieger took to Instagram on Wednesday to thank Gotham FC for what she called an “unforgettable” night, which included a postgame ceremony for the retiring star.

“Thank you for an unforgettable night celebrating with my two beautiful kids, family, best friends, teammates, fans and incredible @gothamfc staff! I will never forget you,” she wrote. “Thank you for making me feel so valued, appreciated and truly adored.”

The 39-year-old defender also posted pictures from what looks to be a retirement celebration, which included Megan Rapinoe and Sue Bird in attendance with t-shirts that read “Ali Krieger Fan Club.” Chicago Red Stars goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher also was in attendance.

Kriger played with Naeher and Rapinoe on the U.S. women’s national team during the 2015 and 2019 World Cup title runs.

As Krieger prepares for retirement, she is balancing turmoil in her personal life, as her wife and former USWNT and Gotham FC teammate Ashlyn Harris filed for divorce in September. Yet Krieger is receiving support from family, friends and fellow players.

Gotham FC players spoke about what Krieger has meant to them in their careers following Sunday’s 2-2 tie with the Kansas City Current, which clinched a playoff spot for the team.

“[Ali Krieger] has been there for me in times where I don’t really allow people to be there for me,” USWNT and Gotham forward Midge Purce said. “Honestly, that’s the best testament I can give to her. She’s someone I trust to let in and can be there for you when you need her.”

She also called her “outstanding” and the “best player on the field” for Gotham in their win.

Gotham FC midfielder Yazmeen Ryan echoed that sentiment.

“Ali Krieger is a beast. She is the standard, she’s everything, a legend, and she showed that through and through tonight,” Ryan said. “Very much, by far the player of the match, player of the season for us. Our captain. We couldn’t have done it without her.”