Megan Rapinoe is all the talk of the sports world right now and rightly so. The 2019 Women’s World Cup winner, Golden boot winner with 6 goals and also winning the Finals player of the year trophy; a star for the US women’s team, really making a difference in her side. But let’s briefly see how she got to where she is now being recognised as one of the best in world.
Megan’s rise to prominence
Megan Rapinoe is a winger for Reign FC, scoring 37 goals in 75 appearances. For the US she’s scored an impressive 50 goals in 157 appearances and has helped them win back to back World Cups and a Gold medal at the 2012 Olympic games.
Rapinoe first took headlines in 2016, however not for football. She took a knee during the american national anthem in a show of support for American Football outcast Colin Kaeperknick who also took the knee during the anthem in protest against the injustice of the American police and justice system. Rapinoe took a lot of backlash for this, but she stuck to her guns.
In fact, Rapinoe is quite the political activist, being part of the LGBTQ community she’s been very outspoken about LGBTQ rights. She also took the lead in rejecting the US team’s visit to the White House after their World Cup win which again raised some eyebrows among some, specifically Donald Trump supporters
Bridging the gender pay gap
Megan Rapinoe didn’t stop there, she’s also been vocal in the media about gender inequality reflected in the salary difference between the men and women’s football teams.
The US women’s team generate more money than the men since the US women’s team won their 3rd world cup in 2015. In 2016-2018 the women generated a revenue of $50.8 million in total compared to the men’s team who generated $49.9 million.
Just for qualifying for a World Cup, each male player would receive $108,695 however a female player would only receive $37,500. The USA Women’s team have won the last two World Cups whilst the Men’s team didn’t even qualify for the 2018 World Cup.
The issue of equal pay is a complicated one, but the bottom line for the US women’s team is correct: They do deserve more money primarily for their dominance in Women’s football and also for their entertainment and attention they add to the sport.
Even rapper Snoop Dogg was in support of the Women’s football team increased pay!
Dancing into a new age of dominance
Apparently Megan Rapinoe can do nothing right in the mind of her critics. In celebration of her team’s World Cup win as well as her own individual awards, Rapinoe has drawn more criticism for the videos of her dancing and claiming that she deserves this success. She’s also been flagged for seeming to sign fan memorabilia without making any eye contact with fans.
What Megan Rapinoe is doing is nothing different to what other sport stars of the world have done in the past or even still do now. For example Conor McGregor, Floyd Mayweather, Zlatan Ibrahimovic or Lewis Hamilton who are all generally loved but certainly come across arrogant in some of their celebrations.
What Megan has achieved at this world cup should be celebrated and she is well within her right to do so.
One thing is for sure, Megan Rapinoe’s comments off the pitch has drawn attention to the talent and excitement Women’s football has to offer on the pitch. With as much backlash she’s received, the dominance of the USA Women’s Football team and the traction they have gained for women’s football is propelling a sport which for many years has been largely underappreciated.