Carli Lloyd on seeing the Rolling Stones, enjoying her farewell and why what she's done is so hard

On Sunday night, Carli Lloyd was among 45,000 fans who turned up at U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis to see the Rolling Stones.

She even got to meet Mick Jagger.

Stardom gave Lloyd and U.S. teammates Megan Rapinoe and Alex Morgan the chance to do the latter.

Approaching retirement has allowed Lloyd to enjoy the former.

"I've often missed out on going to do things for fun," she said ahead of Tuesday's farewell game with the U.S. national team against South Korea in St. Paul. "I'm not missing out on anything now."

At 39, Lloyd is half Jagger's age.

"I was really happy that I decided to go see the Rolling Stones live," she said. "They were unbelievable. They sorta make me feel like I should keep playing. Mick Jagger running down the stage at the age of 78, and performing the way that he did was pretty incredible."

Since Lloyd turned 39 in July, she has played nine games for the USA and scored eight goals. She'll play for the USA on Tuesday night and Gotham FC for the rest of the NWSL season. She could continue playing, but she says she's ready to move on.

"I don't think that there's many that understand what it actually takes," she said during an emotional media call on Monday. "I just said the other day at training it's very tiring to continue to prove people wrong. And it's nice knowing that for 17 years, I've just been on that mission to be the best that I possibly can be."

Lloyd said she's changed, or at least changed her focus:

"It's also amazing to have not only the focus that I had throughout my career, but to then have this different emotion that I can actually enjoy the stadiums, the fans, see the posters, see the jerseys, just be in the moment. I've had the best of both worlds, and I can't look back and say I wish I did this, or I wish I focused a bit more."

She said the next phase of her life will be no different:

"I'm going to find something that I'm passionate about and do it to the best of my ability. I want to eventually start a family with my husband and want to be the best mom and strive to be the best wife that I possibly can. And it's just going to be a little different. I'm not going to be feeling the pressure of having to perform in World Cup and Olympics, but I got to do that and now I'll just shift gears into something different."

Lloyd is the second-most capped player in soccer history with 315 games played and fourth all-time with 134 international goals scored. She won Olympic gold medals in 2008 and 2012, scoring the winning goals in both gold-medal games, and she won Women's World Cup championships in 2015 and 2019. Lloyd has made it look easy but she repeatedly comes back to just the opposite.

"You all see the first 10 minutes of a training session the day before a game, you watch us play 90 minute games once, twice a month," she told the USWNT media contingent, "but you don't see everything that goes into this behind the scenes having to be your ultimate best every single day, having to evolve under different coaches in different positions, in different areas of the game. It is so, so hard to be here."

Her advice?

"We all have had different journeys, different stories, but I think what makes people great on this team, what makes great athletes great in their respective sports is how hard their journey is. You have to just embrace it and be able to persevere through anything that's thrown your way."

Photo: Scott Winters/Icon Sportswire

5 comments about "Carli Lloyd on seeing the Rolling Stones, enjoying her farewell and why what she's done is so hard".
  1. R2 Dad, October 26, 2021 at 1:58 a.m.

    No disrespect, but I've never once read that Ronaldo or Ibra characterized their training as so, so hard. Maybe that's what it takes to be the best in the world. And maybe it's easier not to claim that when the top men make 100 times more than the top women. In any event, she is lucky to get such a long and dignified send--off. I see so few men getting that treatment on the USMNT. i look forward to the day when players no longer get over 200 caps because the competition on the squad demands it. 

  2. Bob Ashpole replied, October 26, 2021 at 3:04 a.m.

    If you had said that about any other player, I would let it pass. Lloyd trains much harder than anyone else. That is why she was winning the FIFA Player of the Year in her mid-30s and retired at 39. At 39 she was still a good bet for being the most fit player on the team.

    The only men's player that I would compare their fitness level to hers is Thomas Dooley. IMO he is lengendary for his attitude and fitness. 

  3. Mark Landefeld replied, October 26, 2021 at 5:20 p.m.

    After the Olympic semifianl loss, Lloyd, who had played only 45 minutes, is seen here in the background doing her additional fitness work to be eady to play 90 in the next game:

  4. Lloyd Weinstein, October 26, 2021 at 12:17 p.m.

    No disrespect to the USMNT players but if you think about what the women have accomplished as a team and individually, there are very few men that would deserve the send-off that players like Carly Lloyd or past stars like Kristine Lilly and Mia Hamm received. At the world level they are much more accomplished than their male counterparts on Team USA!

  5. Kent James replied, October 26, 2021 at 6:41 p.m.

    Agreed.  There also aren't a lot of men playing (and scoring goals) on the Men's national team at age 39...She deserves a good send-off, she's earned it.

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