The United States Women’s National Team discussed the devastating loss to Sweden in the 2016 Rio Olympic Games that sent them packing early. After winning the gold in the 2012 Olympic Games in London, the women’s team came up short, finishing in fifth place in 2016.

“It was terrible, obviously,” captain Megan Rapinoe said on that final loss in 2016. “Like Becky said, we have very high standards for the team, which is championship or total failure. So, we felt like total failures. We didn’t complete the task. We didn’t play particularly well. It was kind of a particularly gutting loss in a lot of ways,” Rapinoe said.

“It definitely left, I wouldn’t say a bad taste in people’s mouth; I think it left a fire under people to never let that happen again,” Rapinoe added.

The women’s team is looking to regain a gold medal in 2021 in Tokyo. The United States are probably considered the favorites, but they aren’t taking anything for granted this time around.

“We certainly have that in the back of our mind,” Rapinoe said. “I think everybody who was there in Rio does not want that to be their last Olympic experience or their only Olympic experience or the one that’s freshest.”

The 2021 Olympic Games are scheduled to take place from July 21 to August 6. The draw has yet to be determined, but it is only a matter of time before we find out who the Americans will be playing in the group stage.

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