Several USWNT players wow over their support in France
Megan Rapinoe expects "at least 50/50" of the fans against the hosts
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By Erin Fish with USA
From Reims to Paris to Le Havre and back to Reims – every time the USWNT has played at this FIFA Women’s World Cup™, the stadium has been a sea of red, white and blue.
“We’ve had another non-home World Cup that feels like a home World Cup,” Megan Rapinoe told FIFA.com as she referred to Canada 2015, where Americans crossed the border en masse. “The fan support not only from fans traveling, but some of the French fans in the area has been incredible and filled the stadiums at our games. It just makes it so much more enjoyable and makes the experience so much better.”
With this tournament unfolding in a different continent, rather than a neighbouring nation four years ago, nobody expected USA to have such astronomical support, but those loyal, impassioned Americans have ensured history has repeated itself.
“The stadiums have been rockin’,” said Julie Ertz. “In 2015, having the fans there and them being so loud was amazing. And I think coming to France we were wondering if it would be similar, and it’s been unreal just to hear them throughout the game.”
On Friday, there is no doubt the Parc des Princes will be filled with red, white and blue, but with USA taking on hosts France, the question is which side will have the biggest support. The quarter-final is being universally billed as ‘The final that should have been’.
“I know there’s a lot of hype about this game and there is a lot of talk about how this should be the final, but I’m so excited just to go out there,” said Mal Pugh. “I know it’s going to be a great match because it’s in Paris and we might be the underdog, but honestly I know that if we continue to build on the momentum that we’ve been having, we’ll be fine.”
Rapinoe reckons USA will have at least half the Parc des Princes behind them, but is relishing the contest even if that is not the case.
“I feel like it’ll be fun, we don’t often get to play in front of a hostile crowd,” said the two-goal hero of USA’s Round-of-16 defeat of Spain. “We play a lot of games at home, a lot of friendlies, so we always have everyone on our side. So I feel like it’ll be fun. But the way that the fans have traveled, I think it will be at least 50/50.”
Fans interested in attending the FIFA Women’s World Cup France 2019 can still purchase tickets for the tournament via www.fifa.com/tickets, as well as via ticket booths located at stadia for remaining matches still available to the general public.