Los Angeles (AFP) – Two-time Olympic gold medal winner Carli Lloyd said on Monday she will retire from the US women’s national soccer team later this year.
Lloyd, who was also named FIFA Women’s Player of the Year twice, announced she plans to hang up her cleats after a series of national team exhibition matches in the fall.
The 39-year-old also plans to finish the professional soccer season out with the NJ/NY Gotham FC team of the National Women’s Soccer League
In her most recent national team outing earlier this month, Lloyd helped the US win a bronze medal in the women’s soccer tournament at the Tokyo Olympics.
The World Cup champions had hoped for gold in Japan but losses to Sweden in group play and to Canada in the semi-finals dashed their top of the podium aspirations.
Lloyd, who was the oldest player on the US Olympic team, has amassed 312 caps, trailing only Kristine Lilly (354) all-time in international play.
Only four players have played 300 or more times for their country in international women’s soccer history.
“When I first started out with the National Team in 2005, my two main goals were to be the most complete soccer player I could be and to help the team win championships,” Lloyd said.
“Every single day I stepped out onto the field, I played as if it was my last game. I never wanted to take anything for granted, especially knowing how hard it is to get to the top, but even harder to stay at the top for so long.”
Lloyd also played pro soccer with six teams over 12 years.
“Carli Lloyd is a true legend,” said US women’s national team coach Vlatko Andonovski.
“Her career was unique, and her success on the field is something all current and future National Team players should aspire to achieve.”
Lloyd played for five different national team head coaches, earning 100 caps under Pia Sundhage and 124 under Jill Ellis.
“I am thankful for all five head coaches I have played for, as they have all helped mold me into the player I have become over the years,” Lloyd said.