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Trump criticises USWNT captain Rapinoe for not singing anthem

Megan Rapinoe standing without singing the American National Anthem before the game against Spain at Women's World Cup

Getty Images

USWNT captain Megan Rapinoe has remained true to her word and not sung the American anthem before World Cup games, something that the US president has come out to criticise.

The US women's national team captain, Megan Rapinoe, has been at the centre of media attention during the ongoing World Cup, both for her actions on and off the field.

And her decision to not sing the American national anthem as a self-proclaimed "walking protest" against Donald Trump's policies has drawn criticism from the U.S. president himself.

Trump has noticed that while Rapinoe's teammates sing along to the national anthem before each World Cup match, the team captain has stood silently. And when asked about whether he thought Rapinoe's actions were appropriate by The Hill, Trump replied: "No, I don't think so."

However, the president was not as harsh as he has been on other occasions when referring to similar actions taken by NFL players, whose acts of protests started with now-former NFL quarterback, Colin Kaepernick.

Kaepernick made world headlines for kneeling during the American anthem as a means to protest against police brutality and racism in the US, something from which Californian midfielder Rapinoe took as inspiration for her own protest.

Rapinoe has been protesting since 2016, and her initial actions prompted the US Soccer Federation to create a rule that requires all players to "stand up respectfully" when the anthem is being performed. As a result, Rapinoe now stands for the antherm but she refuses to sing the lyrics as a way to continue her own protest. 

Trump criticises USWNT captain Rapinoe for not singing anthem

Rapinoe decision

Rapinoe has previously declared that she will probably never put her hand on her heart nor sing along during the national anthem again, and in 2016 she explained the reasons behind her decision to The Player's Tribune

"I have not experienced police brutality, racism, or anything like seeing the body of a dead family member in the street. But I can't do nothing when there are people in this country who have to deal with this kind of thing," said the Reign FC player. 

"There is no perfect way to protest, I know that nothing I do will alleviate the pain of those families, but I feel that kneeling during the national anthem is the correct way to proceed. And I will do whatever it takes to be part of the solution."