Women’s World Cup 1999 to 2015: Pure Joy Makes No Apologies

The last time we won a Women’s World Cup, it looked like this…

Brandi SI cover“The enduring image of Brandi Chastain, triumphant on a sweltering July day in Pasadena, will endure, documenting a populist victory that helped propel women’s soccer into the national consciousness,” writes David Davis in How the Most Iconic Photo in Women’s Soccer was Almost Never Taken. 

That’s what graced the cover of the July 19, 1999, edition of Sports Illustrated, taken by staff photographer Robert Beck. Such great drama, as 90,000 spectated from their seats and nearly 18 million watched from their tv screens, my family, including three daughters, among them.

A moment of joy that was a lifetime in the making.

But more than victory, more than celebration, more than the bra, Chastain’s legacy speaks to all girls trying their hardest to do something big.

“I think, mostly, young girls demur when they do something great,” Chastain says. “They don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings or (they) apologize for their greatness. I feel that picture represents somebody who was in love with what they were doing and joyful at the outcome.”

We must as women and girls celebrate the good things that we do because if we can’t feel good about the good things we do, nobody else can.”

Thank you, Brandi and Team USA 1999, for your composure, fight and unshakable confidence. What a moment you created for female athletes around the world. You hoisted a Cup which now has many contenders. You inspired not only a generation of American girls but a world of girls to dream big and live their goals; on the field and off of it.

Now, can we stop apologizing for being good at what we do and get on with it? Let’s bring the Cup home where it belongs. OneTeamOneNation! Here from the team and share your dreams here: #SHEBELIEVES

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