Sunday 18 August 2019

'You see men celebrating, grabbing their crotches' - US goalscorer Alex Morgan baffled by storm over tea-cup

USA's Alex Morgan (left) celebrates scoring her side's second goal of the game during the FIFA Women's World Cup Semi Final match at the Stade de Lyon. Richard Sellers/PA Wire
USA's Alex Morgan (left) celebrates scoring her side's second goal of the game during the FIFA Women's World Cup Semi Final match at the Stade de Lyon. Richard Sellers/PA Wire

Tony Considine

Alex Morgan has shrugged off criticism of her tea-drinking celebration of the USA's winning goal against England and believes that it pales in comparison with celebrations recently seen in the mens' game.

After scoring the winner, the striker lifted her little finger as is sipping tea which some took as a reference to the English obsession with the beverage and also it's link to American independence via the famous Boston Tea Party when protesters destroyed an entire East India Company shipment.

Morgan responded on Friday, stating it had nothing to do with England and suggesting there was a sexist angle to the condemnation given the lack of criticism of Cristiano Ronaldo and Diego Simeone’s crotch-grabbing celebrations during the Champions League last year.

"My celebration was actually more about, 'That’s the tea', which is telling a story, spreading news," Morgan explained.

“Sophie Turner does it quite often, she’s one of my favourite actresses, so it wasn't a hit to England in any way.

"I feel that there is some sort of double standard for females in sports to feel like we have to be humble in our successes and have to celebrate, but not too much, and have to do something but it always has to be in a limited fashion.

"You see men celebrating all around the world in big tournaments, grabbing their sacks or whatever it is, and when I look at sipping a cup of tea, I'm a little taken aback. You have to laugh about it to see all of the criticism."

The Orlando Pride forward was particularly disappointed that England international and former team-mate Lianne Sanderson considered it "distasteful" and "disrespectful" when commenting in her role as a pundit on Bein Sports.  

"I'm a little disappointed in that. Obviously we were team-mates at Orlando Pride so I have the utmost respect for Lianne and all of my team-mates that I've ever played with," Morgan added.

"But I don’t think we’ll be deterred by a couple of naysayers,"   

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