Morgan put some English on ball

Kevin Baxter, Los Angeles Times on

Published in Soccer

LYON, France -- Alex Morgan stepped out of the U.S. team hotel Wednesday afternoon carrying a cup of coffee which, given the way she celebrated her game-winning goal against England the night before, you would have figured wasn't her cup of tea.

After heading in a perfect feed from Lindsey Horan to give the U.S. a lead it wouldn't relinquish in a Women's World Cup semifinal, Morgan calmly jogged to the edge of the penalty area, pressed the index finger and thumb of her right hand together, stood erect and mimicked drinking from a cup of tea, pinkie properly extended.

The team party (and the tea party) ended when Morgan, the team captain, was engulfed by teammates Rose Lavelle and Tobin Heath.

"I don't know why she did that," teammate Kelley O'Hara said. "But it was pretty funny."

The reason why wasn't all that hard to figure out.

The English had been trolling the Americans all week, accusing them of scouting their team hotel, claiming they had the formula to beating the defending champions and basically displaying the kind of swagger and confidence Morgan and her team are famous for. Morgan's goal essentially ended all that, sending the U.S. on to its third straight Women's World Cup final.


"I wanted to keep it interesting," Morgan said. "I know (teammate) Megan Rapinoe has the best celebration. So I had to try to step up this game."

Asked if her gesture was aimed at the English, Morgan played it coy.

"I didn't say it," she told reporters. "You guys did."

Was it planned?


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