WNT Oct 2, 2010
Two U.S. legends reunite: Akers and Lilly
Yesterday afternoon, 15 U.S. players and head coach Pia Sundhage took a short trip (just 30 minutes from the team hotel) to the horse rescue farm of WNT legend Michelle Akers. The USA's all-time greatest player (just ask Mia Hamm and Kristine Lilly), is still bringing her farm back into form after some terrible flooding last September (as chronicled on ESPN's E:60).
The U.S. players got to meet the horses, the goats (everyone loved the goats) and dogs, as well as chat with Michelle, who was scoring spectacular goals for the USA when most of them were just little babies. Kristine Lilly, who started playing with Michelle on the WNT in 1987 and did 13 years with her in a U.S. uniform, spoke to the current players about Michelle and expressed her joy in the players getting to visit with someone who laid the foundation for what they experience on the WNT today.
The players even got to help feed the horses and give some treats to the goats. Akers gave the team a great tour of the property and some insight into life on a farm. Some players seemed to take to it...others, well, let's call them "city girls." It was a short, but fun and nostalgic visit for the players, many of whom grew up hearing about the legend of Akers or with posters of her on their walls. Akers, who is recovering from knee surgery (she's had about 17 of those) is planning on attending the USA's match vs. China today.
Alex Morgan (far left) was born three years after Akers scored her first goal for the USA
Kristine Lilly feeds a goat. Akers has named a goat after Lilly. We think it's this one.'
Lilly with her daughter Sidney, Akers and Akers' miniature horse, Candy
Akers introduces the team to one of her horses
Ali Krieger, Meghan Schnur and Becky Sauerbrunn find a horse that is not so big
Doggies love Stephanie Cox