The United States' women's national soccer team defeated Japan in a dominant performance 5 goals to 2 to become World Cup champions, and the world took to social media to respond and react. The team received whole-hearted congratulations from everyone from celebrities ...
... to politicians, including Vice President Joe Biden, who attended the final match with his wife, Jill:
The breakout star of the game was Carli Lloyd, who scored a hat trick of goals in the first half (in just 16 minutes of game time no less), including a beautiful long goal from midfield that sailed just over the Japanese keeper's head.
Lloyd earned high praise for her clutch performance:
However, some controversy lingered over the game and the tournament as a whole. FIFA has been long shamed for it's shabby treatment of the women's side of the World Cup, and there has been much criticism leveled at FIFA for holding the women's tournament on artificial turf, which can change gameplay and, as many players have noted, tear up players' legs.
This disparity extended to FIFA's social media efforts, which refused to fully promote the women's tournament through its official World Cup Twitter handle @FIFAWorldCup, which has 3.58 million followers, instead delegating full Twitter promotional efforts to @FIFAWWC, which has a mere 222 thousand followers.
And, in a tourney that celebrated the skill and dedication of female athletes, the championship trophy was presented by ten women in tight black dresses and a Canadian Mountie, in what Tom Reed called "[Outgoing FIFA president] Sepp Blatter's last middle finger to women's soccer." Luckily, some tweeters had fun with the slight:
One of the more subtle triumphs of the final came just after it ended, when Abby Wambach ran to the stands to give her wife, former player Sarah Huffman, a celebratory kiss, and, as several noted, it wasn't that big a deal.
Overall, it was a magnificent day for women's sports in the United States, and for sports as a whole. Here's looking forward to the next tourney in France in 2019!