Leroux elated over World Cup win, Dwyer’s support

Harjeet Johal July 16, 2015 37
Getty Images

Getty Images

VANCOUVER, British Columbia — The United States touted its depth throughout the 2015 Women’s World Cup. All but one field player took part in the tournament.

Sydney Leroux only played 182 minutes across four matches at the World Cup, but she bought into the team mentality.

“I could not be happier,” Leroux said after the United States’ 5-2 victory over Japan to claim the World Cup title. “I know I didn’t get the minutes, but it took 23 of us. I couldn’t stop crying because it’s something that I gave up a long time ago and it has been a hard road. I hugged my mom, and she said, that we did it, we made it. Growing up where I grew up and how I grew up and now being a world champion. There’s no better feeling.”

Buying in as a team player can be difficult for some who don’t get a lot of playing time, but this was not the case with Leroux. The 25-year-old was more than happy with her role and the end result of becoming a World Cup Champion.

Leroux the victim of hateful comments via social media and chants such as “Judas” during United States matches in Canada over the years. (Leroux said that she had racial insults hurled at her during Olympic qualifying in Vancouver in January 2012, but the claims were never proven.)

[MORE: Wambach, Huffman share iconic kiss after World Cup final]

Leroux’s decision to leave Surrey, British Columbia, as a teenager to pursue her dream of becoming a professional soccer player for the U.S. drew negative reactions from Canadians who were upset with her departure. But Leroux does not feel the need to gloat toward those who have insulted her along the way.

“No matter what, I know my decision was right,” Leroux said. “Canada Soccer has moved so much further than when I was a child and when I made the choice to leave. I will never go back on that decision. I made that decision when I was very young and I knew what I wanted to do and I knew I wanted to be a part of this team. I said I wanted to play on the best team in the world and we proved that.”

Sydney Leroux and Dom Dwyer kiss after the United States' World Cup final win over Japan. (Getty Images)

Sydney Leroux and Dom Dwyer kiss after the United States’ World Cup final win over Japan. (Getty Images)

Leroux’s husband, Dom Dwyer, plays for Sporting Kansas City in Major League Soccer. He had no trouble juggling his commitments with his club team during the World Cup so he could support his wife.

“I’m just a normal person so it’s easy,” he said. “You can be a fan of a team and play sports too. I was obviously a fan of the U.S. team and they did very very well, and I’m very pleased they won.”

Dwyer had a simple and honest answer as to why he likes women’s soccer: “My wife plays it.”

The couple got married in a private ceremony in January.

The scheduling of MLS matches can include long travel across North America. Dwyer was not able to get to as many U.S. matches as he would have liked. He was able to meet his wife for brunch in Vancouver on the morning of the July 5.

[KASSOUF: Will Wambach retire? Ellis faces tough roster decisions for Olympics]

Dwyer, a Cuckfield, England native, was able to come up to Canada for only a pair of World Cup matches: the final and the opener in Winnipeg against Australia, where Leroux tallied an assist on the game-winning goal.

After the United States’ victory, an emotional Leroux credited her husband with being her rock and providing strong support, an open ear and a shoulder to cry on. Without Dwyer by her side, Leroux is not quite certain that she would be where she is now.

“He’s been amazing,” Leroux said. “To be honest, it’s been a hard road and we always say… It’s been a long road but we’re here now. That’s my an Dom’s saying. I just wanted to say, thank you so much for being there for me, because I don’t know if I could have handled it without him. It’s been an up and down ride and it’s been a hard ride. Coming back from an injury and fighting your way back to a starting spot to however the World Cup plays out. Sometimes if something’s not broken, you don’t fix it. I was just very happy to have him and especially to have him here.”

The MLS season and NWSL season are both primarily played during the spring and summer. It can be difficult for athletes to spend time with their spouse. Leroux was traded by the Seattle Reign FC to Western New York Flash in a blockbuster trade in March. She has inquired with Seattle about a trade to FC Kansas City to be close to her husband, something which remains important to her even after the World Cup.

“Of course, yes,” shes said. “That is where I would love to play. To be honest, anywhere where my husband is, is where I want to be.”

  • Lord Zlatan

    Where is the story on Mr. Carasco and Mr. Holiday. Not a lot of high profile USWNT husband until now, I remember Julie Foudy husband only got in the news after a messy firing from Sky Blue FC.

    • Tae

      I wonder if mixed race marriage plays a role. I recall controversy in 99 when abc cut away from Scurry receiving her medal.
      Jrue doesn’t lack for attention though. Good player.

      • Lorehead

        Since FOX didn’t shy away from Abby Wambach’s same-sex marriage, I doubt it. Thanks, Harjeet, for posting this lovely kiss too.

        • I’m not making an argument one way or the other, but what ABC did in 99 has nothing to do with what FOX does in 2015.

          • Lorehead

            I might be missing your point, but both the Leroux–Dwyer kiss and the Wambach–Huffman kiss were in 2015.

          • Tae

            Yeah. But I noticed they didn’t identify Huffie even though she used to be a footballer. Or did I miss it? I guess the more important thing is they showed it.

          • Kyle Wilson

            Yeah, I remember the Wambach kiss shown several times (w/o naming Huffman), Sydney’s kiss once (I don’t remember if they named Dom), & I don’t recall seeing a Lauren-Jrue kiss (pretty sure not shown).

          • Steglitz49

            In 1999 it was running around in your sportsbra. In 2015 it is public snogging. What has the world of WoSo come to? We look forward to 2019 with bated breath.

          • Kyle Wilson

            that’s progress, at least

          • FootballNowAndAlways

            I am not sure the public is ready for a kiss between a Black man (a really dark Black man at that) and a White woman. They are much less indisposed to a White man/Black woman laison. It helps if the “Black” woman is mixed and not fully Black.

          • Kyle Wilson

            I thought it was pretty favorable for Seal & Heidi Klum, but I don’t really know.

          • Tae was talking about 99.

          • Kyle Wilson

            wait, what?

    • Kyle Wilson

      If there’s no conflict, there’s no story. Alex & Lauren played – so what’s the story? Fwiw, I had to look up who Carasco was (& I did know Alex was married).

      And I just learned of Krashlyn after trying to find out who was wearing the suit (other than Wambach).

  • woso32rooter

    …. To Equalizer Soccer Team. I am delighted for Syd and hope she gets her secure base. But I hope Equalizer Soccer will also give us insights on stories not already trending. For example, Engen, goalkeepers Harris, Naeher who sat on the bench for over 630 minutes. What did it look to like being in the squad to sit- train-sit…. When do players know they will be bench warmers for the duration. It took 23 players and a wily coach to Gold. Give us individual compelling news or perspectives. A Whitney or Jill interview to start with.

    • Tae

      Speaking of keepers on the bench I feel bad for Barney that she didn’t get a medal. I always thought, even if Hope is better, Barney is close enough that we could start her and do just as well.

      • Kyle Wilson

        Yeah, good point I’d overlooked (just happy to have her playing). Unless it was an injuries concern/recovery (she had a butt-load of them last year), I was surprised she wasn’t on the team. 100% agree with your point, though.

      • woso32rooter

        The redux Solo has been beyond extraordinary on the field and off. That may suggest an even longer wait for Harris and Naeher to gain experience/ caps ? Then again, Hope may cajole Jill to start Harris and Naeher during The Victory Tour.

        The link below brings up the pre-world cup roster discussion about Barney and others. She seemed to be the first one phased out of camp.
        http://www.thebentmusket.com/united-states-national-soccer-teams/2015/4/16/8422127/2015-USWNT-world-cup-roster-indicates-shallow-player-pool-Jill-Ellis

        Of WWC’15 teams, I think it was Japan that intentionally rotated 2, or all goalies during the rounds stages before Kaihori became the consistent starter GK.

      • Yeah, I still feel bad about this. If Boxx gets a medal (seemingly) for time served, why not Barnie. She’s still an amazing keeper, notched shutouts for the U.S. in major tournaments, and has put in the years behind Hope. I feel she deserved to make the roster ahead of Naeher, who has no international experience.

        • Tae

          I simply couldn’t understand it. It’s not like there’s been a decline in Barnie’s performance in the extremely unlikely event you need both backup keepers, I don’t think anyone would have been worried if Barnie needed to come in. If you’re going to leave out a deserving veteran to give a young player tournament experience, an outfield slot would have been a better choice imho.

    • Kyle Wilson

      You’ve heard Ellis presser’s – that’s not going to make for compelling interviews.

      • woso32rooter

        True that.

    • Steglitz49

      Reserve goalies often sit on the bench if the first choice is playing well. The reserve goalies in the top men’s club earn a lot for doing little. I doubt that club reserve females earn much at all.

      Sometimes they get to step in. If they are really lucky, they get lent to another team and can make their name, like that Belgian chap Courtois did for Atletico.

      Hope’s career went via that great soccer academy of Göteborg, who also had Christen among their alumni in this year’s winning NT.

  • AlexH

    If the headline read:

    Syd on winning the world cup, husband ‘meh’

    That would be news. The current headline, not so much.

  • nwslfan

    Injury? What injury? Details please.
    I am fine w Syd-the-fighter narrative bc it is valid, but Syd-the-diva narrative bubbles up and seems to be equally valid.
    I hope she gets her game face on for WNY pretty damn quick bc it is growing tedious to watch her play without heart for club.

    • Lola

      She did have an ankle injury from the January camp and that is why she wasn’t getting much play time with the NT and she did miss some games. As for the club she has only played 3 games so we will have to see how she does for the remainder of the season.

      • nwslfan

        Thanks

  • PMT

    My plane ride out, Dom and Servando were on the same flight. I had to laugh when someone said they knew of Dom because of Syd. They were both incredibly gracious to people coming up to them and took pictures with anyone who asked. Very low key gentlemen.

    • Tae

      Did anybody know Servando?

    • Steglitz49

      Did you conclude that Alex and Syd are about to join Lira and Celia, not to mention Lauren?

  • kernel_thai

    I thought in the end most of the players seemed to have bought into their roles and it helped the US win

    • Rdalford

      agree that having all 23 players on the team bought into their roles and ready/able to contribute if/when they were asked (for example O’Hara, A-Rod, Brian in China match) was an important part of uswnt “team” winning WC

    • NYRick

      The interesting point about your statement is not that I’m necessarily disagreeing, there may be a good deal of truth to the all 23 player buy-in. But there is a part of me that thinks that two players would not have bought into sitting for the good of the team: Alex and Carli. No way on earth would they have bought into sitting, even when it was deserved. They both would have sulked.

  • guest

    leroux want’s to be traded to kansas city. but if her husband get’s traded away from kansas city that mean’s she would want to be traded again? can’t see too many leroux trade offers in the near future. lol

    • guest

      let’s be honest…. leroux really want’s to be traded to hollywood.

    • Well, Orlando REALLY wants Dom back, and now they’re probably adding an NWSL team, so Dom/Syd could be a package deal.

      However, SKC doesn’t want to let Dom go, but it looks like Carrasco might go, so I could foresee Alex and Servando going to Florida, and Syd coming to KC to fill the hole(s) left by Holiday and others.

  • Rufan

    We saw them too at breakfast that Sunday but it was at a crepes restaurant near the friends & family hotel, not brunch.