Megan Rapinoe underwent surgery to repair the torn Achilles tendon in her right leg, she and OL Reign announced Wednesday.
The longtime U.S. women’s national team and OL Reign forward sustained the injury early in the 2023 NWSL Championship, which also was the final match of her storied career.
“I wasn’t overly emotional about it,” Rapinoe said after OL Reign’s 2-1 loss to Gotham FC. “I mean, f—ing yeeted my Achilles in the sixth minute in my last game ever in the literal championship game.”
Her former USWNT teammate Christen Press, though, couldn’t hold back her own emotions while watching the game at Snapdragon Stadium in San Diego, as Tobin Heath shared on the latest episode of their podcast, “The RE-CAP Show.”
“I was looking around trying to see if the stadium was processing what was happening,” Heath said. “And I looked over you and you were crying. And it was such a complicated moment of feelings.”
“We just were not ready for the end to come right at the beginning,” Press said. “And when I texted Pinoe after the game, I told her: Three tears hit the floor. That’s what happened, three giant, real tears hit the floor underneath my shoes.
“And you know what I thought? I thought, those aren’t tears of pity. She’s too important. She’s had too big of a career. She’s had too much success and joy playing this sport for us to have pity. That would be a disservice to the legacy that she’s leaving.
“And the tears fell from my face with love and pride to be able to have shared the field and the locker room with someone who has had such a long-lasting impact and will continue to have that long-lasting impact.”
Rapinoe handled the injury with grace during the championship match, even as her teammates and opponents spoke of their devastation on her behalf. And that continued as she began her recovery.
“Surgery a success. Home, resting, being taken care of,” she wrote on Instagram, tagging her fiancée Sue Bird. “Thank you for all the love, well wishes and good vibes sent my way.”
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Forward Megan Rapinoe underwent successful surgery to repair her torn Achilles tendon, led by Dr. O’Malley, this morning in New York and will immediately begin her recovery process during retirement.— OL Reign PR (@OLReignPR) November 15, 2023
Forward Megan Rapinoe underwent successful surgery to repair her torn Achilles tendon, led by Dr. O’Malley, this morning in New York and will immediately begin her recovery process during retirement.