NEW YORK (FOX 5 NY) - At 36 years old, she may be the oldest member of the United States women’s national soccer team, but Delran, New Jersey native Carli Lloyd thinks she can still play an important role for the team as they look to defend their World Cup title.
“My age isn’t a factor,” Lloyd said. “Being able to grind and play for seven games, I’m conditioned for that. I say I’ve got the mind of a 36-year-old and the body of a 26-year-old.”
However, Lloyd, who scored a hat-trick in the 2015 World Cup final, will begin this tournament as a substitute, coming off the bench to help her teammates.
“Her role is going to be to come off the bench and she has a chip on her shoulder about that,” said Danielle Slaton, former USWNT defender and FOX Sports World Cup game analyst. “I think she’s excited to prove everyone wrong, to prove he’s a starter.”
“At this stage in her career, she knows it’s winding down but she’s also a little bit perturbed that she’s not a starter in this World Cup, and that’s not something that sits well with her.” said Glenn Crooks, who was Lloyd’s head coach at Rutgers University.
Lloyd, a through-and-through competitor, has been known for not wanting her family members or friends to attend her major tournament games. Her own fiancé did not go t the 2015 World Cup final in Canada, but now married for three years, Lloyd says she “may possibly” have saved him a ticket for the semi-final and final, as that is where she expects the USWNT to be in four weeks.