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Women's National Team
Pre-Norway Quote Sheet: Abby Wambach & Kristine Lilly  
 
Abby Wambach
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 Related Articles
Ryan Announces Solo Will Not Be Part of Team's Preparation for USA-Norway
Pre-Norway Quote Sheet: Head Coach Greg Ryan

U.S. captain Kristine Lilly
On how the team is reacting to Hope Solo’s comments:
“Like with everything with this team, we deal with it as a team. We deal with it amongst each other, and then we move on. I think with this situation we have dealt with it as a group and we’ve made some decisions and we’ve moved on. For us, right now, the bigger deal is the game tomorrow. We have a game to play against Norway, and we are in this World Cup situation and this is our chance to get back out on the field and show our country and fans how we can play soccer and that’s really what is important for our group right now, and what we love to do.”

On the decision for Solo to not be a part of the game vs. Norway:
“How we look at everything with our group is we do what’s best for the team. And what is best for the team is the 20 of us right now. I think the circumstance that happened and her going public has affected the whole group, and I think having her with us is still a distraction. If we want to put our best foot forward against Norway on Sunday, this is the best way the team goes about it.”

On how the team supported the decision of Solo not attending the match:
“This is what we’ve decided as a team and how we’ve decided everything as a team and what we decide as a team stays within the team, and that’s the way it is. It is an unfortunate circumstance. We’ve decided as a group and moved on and we look forward to playing. What this team represents and how we handle everything in the last 20 years I have been on this team is within our team, and that’s the way we are going to finish it.”

On the game:
“This will be my third third-place game. I have to say, the World Cup is special in many ways. Obviously, every team is fighting to play in the final. We came up short vs. Brazil, and now we go into this game. The third place game is extremely important. As a group, to finish a World Cup experience, you want to win on a high note to show our fans that we can play better soccer. You don’t always have another game, but we have another game and it’s our opportunity to get out on the field and show what we can do and how we love this game and make our country proud. That’s why we are here. We are representing our country and also U.S. Soccer. This is a game we want to show what we can do and make them proud.”

On if the goalkeeper change was a distraction during the loss to Brazil:
“I don’t think it was a distraction during the game. The game itself, everyone wants to talk about (the loss), and we are missing the game itself. We didn’t play well. Brazil was better that day. That’s the main thing about it, we just didn’t play well. I wouldn’t say there was any distraction. When we were on that field we were playing the game and we were there with the players on the field and the players on the bench. It did cause a little more of a distraction now because we have to deal with it, because you guys want to know all these things that are going on. That’s the only way I feel it’s come into our area. We’ve handled it, we’ve dealt with it and now we look forward to tomorrow and get back on that field.”

On the team’s spirit going into the third-place match:
“Circumstances like this make teams stronger and people stronger. We’ve come together as a team. We’re still tired from the Brazil game, getting over that loss. Today we had a great practice, a pool workout yesterday which was great. The team was in good spirits. We remind the team that we have a goal, and that goal is to win against Norway tomorrow.”

On her future with the national team:
“After this World Cup, I am going to feel how it is and see. The Olympics are not too far off. It’s something I’m going to have to discuss with my husband and feel where I’m at. I still feel I can play the game. Having the loss against Brazil, that doesn’t feel good but it’s part of what I love so much about the game that you have these highs and lows. We’ll see what happens. In the end, we’re going to have a great team representing us at the Olympics and go through qualification. Right now I just want to take this all in, enjoy it with the team right here and see what stands ahead of me.”

U.S. forward Abby Wambach
On the circumstances surrounding Solo’s comments:
“It’s an unfortunate circumstance. It just goes to show you that you have to be professional all the time and you have to watch what you say no matter who you are around or where you are. We, as a team, want to look, as quickly as possible, forward to Norway. This tournament isn’t over, and that is the most unfortunate part about (having to deal with the situation). We as a team want to continue moving forward. I feel a lot about this whole thing, and I feel a lot for Lil’ because I want to talk about this tournament being for her and I want to talk about the Brazil game and I want to talk about Norway, because that is what this team is about. We are women who are fighters, and we are a family. I am very proud of this team and how we have all handled this. I am very proud of our staff and our coaching staff on how they’ve handled this. It’s not easy, and it just goes to show the character of this team, how we have handled it.”

On how the team is dealing with the comments:
“It’s important to know that with this team, and this is why I am so proud of us, is that our main focus is that we learned something from this. This is uncharted territory for a lot us. All of us are focusing on what we can gain from this situation and moving forward. That is our standpoint, that’s where all of us stand. We are speaking for the rest of the players on this team, that as quickly as we can move past this, it’s going to be better for this team and we are going to be able to show the rest of this world who we are and what we are about.”

On if losing in the Women’s World Cup motivates the team for the Olympics:
“I made it a point in ’03 and the other night to watch the other team celebrate. Those are the moments that define you, and those are the moments where your character comes out. How do you deal, not just when you win, but when you lose? This team has always rebounded very well to losses, like ’03 and I know in ’95 they came back and won the ’96 Olympics. Only time can tell, but I do know this. Those memories of Brazil, those goals are etched in every single one of our minds. I think moving forward, as long as we can continue to remember those memories, because those are the things that will make us better, I think we’re going to be great for the future.”

On Solo’s future with the WNT:
“Hope’s future isn’t in my hands at all. It’s, I think, in her own and the coach of the Women’s National Team. I don’t make those decisions on personnel, and thank God for that. It’s too tough of a job.”

On if Solo apologized in a meeting with the team earlier in the day:
“Hope did come in and apologize, and it’s just going to be a matter of time. We’re all humans and we all feel equally about certain subjects and the forgiveness on our team’s hearts is just going to have to come in time. For me, as a person, that’s the most real thing I could say.”

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