Joy of the Game.
We do this because we absolutely love it. The smell of the grass and the light wet cover of the dew. Night games with bright lights and high stakes. Big time tackles that come out of nowhere. Incredible goals in the upper ninety.
Unbelievable saves that you need slow motion replay to actually see. These are moments of utter brilliance. Moments to be celebrated and enjoyed.
We have decided as a team that this World Cup we are going to enjoy the process. Enjoy the journey. That by loving what we do, we will succeed, and at the end of the tournament, victory will just be a byproduct of the fight.
So if we are going to enjoy this, we decided that we are going to need to celebrate and enjoy every single goal we score in this tournament. It started as a small idea at the end of a team meeting and it has taken full flight.
Our first goal that we scored against North Korea, the entire team ran to the bench to celebrate as a unit, and even Heather O'Reilly added her own little slide at the end.
Today in our pregame meeting, more celebrations were a part of the topic. We had planned carefully and everyone was in place at the right times. In the 12th minute, Heather O'Reilly hit an absolute bomb into the upper ninety and the entire team ran together, formed a line, and saluted our troops that were in attendance.
The second goal was the celebration that we were after though. Megan Rapinoe entered the game at halftime and scored within the next five minutes. She ran over to the corner flag where there is usually a TV microphone. She picked it up, tapped it as to say "Is this thing on" and continued to belt out "Born in the USA'' by Bruce Springsteen.
The rest of the team acted as her back up band playing the air guitar and banging on some drums.
The team was all smiles for the rest of the game. We had so much fun playing the sport we love. We aren't letting the pressure get to us. We are determined to love and enjoy the journey, bringing home the gold at the end.