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Crystal Dunn’s emotional reaction to Rapinoe’s retirement: ‘I just love her so much’

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Megan Rapinoe and Crystal Dunn celebrate together after the United States won the 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup. (Photo by Maja Hitij/Getty Images)

After Crystal Dunn was cut from the USWNT roster for the 2015 World Cup, Megan Rapinoe was there to support her.

“She was somebody who just welcomed me so much, (with) open arms,” Dunn reflected on Saturday after Rapinoe announced that she plans to retire at the conclusion of the 2023 NWSL season.

“(Pinoe) is an incredible person, human being, friend, teammate,” Dunn said in a video posted to Twitter by Women Kick Balls, getting choked up. “I just love her so much. She’s been so key for me in my career.”

Dunn said she made Rapinoe a promise heading into the World Cup year.

“One thing I did tell her at the beginning of this year is, ‘I have no idea if this is your last one, but I’m going to do whatever it takes to get myself into a place where I can help this team win. And, obviously, send her off the way she deserves (as) the queen that she is.”

Alex Morgan echoed that sentiment. The newly announced U.S. co-captain told reporters that when Rapinoe texted the group, she immediately knew how to reply: “Well, now we just have to win the whole damn thing.”