Abby Wambach: The Silent Face of U.S. Women's Soccer

David Levin@@davidlevin71Senior Writer IIAugust 6, 2012

Aug 3, 2012; Newcastle, United Kingdom; USA forward Abby Wambach (14) works against New Zealand defender Rebecca Smith (6) in the second half of the women's quarterfinal match during the London 2012 Olympic Games at St James' Park. Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports
Christopher Hanewinckel-US PRESSWIRE

Like the "Little Engine That Could," the U.S. Women’s Soccer Team keeps rolling right along.

And like a really good soap opera, the U.S. Women’s Soccer Team is full of twists and turns and drama, the kind you find on the local cable network.

Through the years, since the era of Mia Hamm and her continued success in putting U.S. Women’s soccer on the map in the United States and globally, there have been many names and faces that coincide with Hamm's over individual and team success, most notably players like Brandy Chastain and Julie Foudy.

Others like Briana Scurry have been part of the past that now links the present to the success of what has been a great marketing strategy by U.S. Women’s Soccer and the U.S. Olympic Committee.

But this time, the Summer Games have come with its share of “dramas,” most notably Chastain, a soccer analyst these days, and Hope Solo, the current goalie for the U.S. Olympic Team.

And through it all, all the drama and the continued success of the team and the want for Alex Morgan to take the reigns and become the new force of success, Abby Wambach is proving to be the glue that holds this team together.

While Solo and Chastain have been fighting it out over Twitter, Wambach has been helping the Americans reach the semifinals in team play.

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Wambach scored the first goal for the USA in a 4–2 win against France at the 2012 Summer Olympics. And also helped by scoring a goal in the U.S. 3-0 win over Columbia.

And I would be remiss if I did not save ties to the University of Florida (1998 to 2001) as a member of the Gators Women’s Soccer Team (got to show some hometown love).

Wambach, at 5’11” is quite the imposing player and her attacking style is just what this team of players needs heading to the gold medal. She speaks with her attitude, leadership and her foot, which is the reason quite honestly for this team’s success so far.

And while Chastain in the past has been more flashy, Hamm has been more vocal and the players of today, meaning Morgan and Solo, have used their beauty as a way to market themselves, Wambach has let he play do all the talking she needs.

Even with a black eye from the Colombian team.

Maybe what drives her more than anything is the fact she was good enough to play in the 2008 Beijing Olympics, but a broken leg in her final game before the world contest prevented her form showcasing her talents.

Her importance to the game is very present as of this month, she has scored a total of 142 goals in 186 international matches and is currently only behind Hamm (158) on USA's all-time scoring list.

As the U.S. team prepares for success tonight and into the week, maybe it can take a page or two from its natural born leader. If Wambach can leave an impression on this team as it moves toward 2016, women’s soccer in the States looks pretty good.

And instead of being all boisterous about it, the leading lady of women’s soccer is doing it in a strong silent fashion.


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